Niche Equipment Markets

Advice from dealers on how to sell unusual or niche products.

ARTICLES

Beef Producers Renewing Demand for Baleage Equipment

The long-time “dairy” practice of ensiling high-moisture hay in plastic bags or wraps is now giving cattle feeders more control over the timing of hay harvest, as well as ability to put up higher quality forage.
As profit margins for U.S. beef producers continue to shrink and, as one cattle feeder says, “The weather man isn’t doing his job any better today than he was 20 years ago,” interest in using baled silage as a way to reduce feeding expenses is showing considerable growth — especially across the eastern half of the U.S.
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Conversations in Ag

Ag Equipment One of the Bright Spots During Janesville’s Post-GM Depression

Both Mid-State Equipment (John Deere) and Johnson Tractor (Case IH) say their most strategic decision yet was establishing stores in the Janesville, Wisconsin market. Johnson arrived there in 1986 and Mid-State Equipment in 2000. Here’s a different — and surprising to some — look at a market that has been well documented since General Motors pulled up stakes from the city.
Both Mid-State Equipment (John Deere) and Johnson Tractor (Case IH) say their most strategic decision yet was establishing stores in the Janesville, Wisconsin market. Johnson arrived there in 1986 and Mid-State Equipment in 2000. Here’s a different — and surprising to some — look at a market that has been well documented since General Motors pulled up stakes from the city.
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Conversations in Ag

Standardizing Diagnostics

John Anderson, president of JCA Electronics and Jan Faassen, sales director for GKN Off-Highway Powertrain, discuss the need for collaboration and standards throughout the supply chain when it comes to preventative diagnostics in farm equipment during the Farm Equipment Manufacturers Assn. Supply Summit in Omaha in April.
John Anderson, president of JCA Electronics and Jan Faassen, sales director for GKN Off-Highway Powertrain, discuss the need for collaboration and standards throughout the supply chain when it comes to preventative diagnostics in farm equipment during the Farm Equipment Manufacturers Assn. Supply Summit in Omaha in April.
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Conversations in Ag

Brand Loyalties: What’s Kept Us from a Big Ticket Sale

Kentucky grain producer Joe Sisk and Jeff Morgan, H&R Agri-Power (Case IH dealer) share views into each other’s world and why they have not yet consummated a high-ticket deal for Sisk’s 5,000-acre operation, which remains 100% green on combines and tractors. As soon as they sat down, Sisk (45) reminded Morgan (53) that he’d been his tractor engine instructor in 4H 33 years earlier. Morgan remembered the class and the curriculum (“intake, compression, power and exhaust”) but hadn’t realized Sisk had been in the class.
Kentucky grain producer Joe Sisk and Jeff Morgan, H&R Agri-Power (Case IH dealer) share views into each other’s world and why they have not yet consummated a high-ticket deal for Sisk’s 5,000-acre operation, which remains 100% green on combines and tractors. As soon as they sat down, Sisk (45) reminded Morgan (53) that he’d been his tractor engine instructor in 4H 33 years earlier. Morgan remembered the class and the curriculum (“intake, compression, power and exhaust”) but hadn’t realized Sisk had been in the class.
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Conversations in Ag

Debating California Tillage

Despite differing opinions, Alan Wilcox, of Wilcox Agri-Products and Jeff Mitchell, no-till advocate at University of California–Davis, sat down during World Ag Expo in Tulare, Calif., to discuss the challenges and the opportunities for conservation tillage practices to take hold in California’s Central Valley.
Despite differing opinions, Alan Wilcox, of Wilcox Agri-Products and Jeff Mitchell, no-till advocate at University of California–Davis, sat down during World Ag Expo in Tulare, Calif., to discuss the challenges and the opportunities for conservation tillage practices to take hold in California’s Central Valley.
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Conversations in Ag

Helping Their Dealers Succeed

Mark Core of Vermeer Corp. and Richard Fox-Marrs of JCB Inc., top executives from two long established, family owned manufacturers of specialty farm equipment, explore their strategies for helping their dealers be profitable by providing services that go beyond traditional product support. Also, providing highly innovative products gives them an edge that competing dealers don’t have.
Mark Core of Vermeer Corp. and Richard Fox-Marrs of JCB Inc., top executives from two long established, family owned manufacturers of specialty farm equipment, explore their strategies for helping their dealers be profitable by providing services that go beyond traditional product support. Also, providing highly innovative products gives them an edge that competing dealers don’t have.
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Conversations in Ag

Color-to-Color Competition in Same Town

In mid-April, Chris Frodel, Mid-State Equipment (John Deere) drove over from her store to meet in the conference room at Johnson Tractor (Case IH), Leo Johnson’s store. The length of Frodel’s drive on Highway 14 was a full 4 minutes. That’s how close these two dealerships are in the rich agricultural region of Janesville, Wis. Both are second-generation dealers with siblings as partners (Chris runs the business with her brother Bryan and father Curt Hanson, while Leo does the same with brother Eric) and steadily collected additional stores from small-operation origins. Frodel (44) and Johnson (62) also found a lot of similarities and values in their businesses as they dug in for a candid discussion and what the future may look like.
In mid-April, Chris Frodel, Mid-State Equipment (John Deere) drove over from her store to meet in the conference room at Johnson Tractor (Case IH), Leo Johnson’s store. The length of Frodel’s drive on Highway 14 was a full 4 minutes. That’s how close these two dealerships are in the rich agricultural region of Janesville, Wis.
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One Career, Two Chapters & Endless Adaptation

George Annen of Annen’s Machinery Ranch in Arlington, Wis., reflects on the digital transition that shaped his career, sharing the benefits, pitfalls and lessons learned trading used equipment in the modern age.
There was once a simpler time in the career of George Annen, a used equipment specialist and owner of Annen’s Machinery Ranch Inc. in Arlington, Wis. A typical day before the internet started with a freshly-brewed pot of coffee, a trip to the convenience store to process tractor photos taken on a film camera, mailing them overnight to a set of interested buyers and preparing for a sales trip the next day if the phone rang.
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