Throughout history, the northwest region has played an essential strategic role in China’s economic development and cultural heritage, from the ancient “Silk Road” to the current “One Belt and One Road” initiative. Today, relying on the dealer that has deeply explored the market, SEM has accelerated the development of the construction machinery industry in the northwest.
With an increasingly diverse product line, SEM set up its dealer network in 1996 to meet the changes in the market. In 1998, Gansu Tianshui Tongniu Construction Machinery., Ltd (Tianshui Hongniu for short) joined SEM’s dealer team. Over the past 30 years, many dealers in the northwest have come and gone. Tianshui Hongniu, however, has chosen to stand by SEM and become the longest-serving dealer in the northwest region.
Tianshui Hongniu is now in Tianshui, in the southeast of Gansu province. It’s located ten miles east of Qinzhou, Tianshui and covers an area of 3,300 square meters. It’s a good location with convenient transportation. The business of Tianshui Hongniu is managed more and more by “Junior Xu,” the son of General Manager Mr. Xu Genniu. “Junior Xu” is very respectful of his father’s arduous journey at the dealership.
In September 2000, Mr. Xu Genniu began selling SEM wheel loaders and parts. There was a wall between the company and their home. Still, Mr. Xu rarely came home. “I didn’t understand why my father was so busy at that time, but I remember that he always said there was a friendship between SEM and him,” “Junior Xu” remembered. “I now understand SEM due to my admiration of my father and the recognition of his value. That’s why I’m willing to take over my father’s business.”
Tianshui Hongniu has carved a suitable development path over the past decades. Mr. Zuo Qigang, the northwest region sales manager of SEM, who has been collaborating with Mr. Xu Genniu for years, has seen the hardships involved with Tianshui Hongniu’s entrepreneurship. “In 2007, Tianshui Hongniu was only a large yard on the edge of the national road. The time when it planned to build the first dealer store was the most difficult period for Mr. Xu. He had to visit customers from morning until night,” said Mr. Zuo Qigang. “When the weather changed, there would be traffic jams. We were often stuck on the road for an entire night, but Mr. Xu had no complaints and was kind and honest when meeting clients the next day, which won the clients’ trust.”
For Mr. Zuo Qigang, who is “very experienced,” it was still quite stressful when he first took over the Gansu market. Recently, he pointed at a map of Gansu and said, “The territory in Gansu is vast, but the market is immature, therefore the key to the large product demand is brand awareness.” As a result, Mr. Zuo Qigang held 17 SEM product exhibitions within three months over 2,200 kilometers from Dunhuang to Longnan. With his professional skills, eloquence and sincere attitude, he has rooted the SEM brand deeply in the hearts of customers and influenced the dealers. When talking about sales performance that year, Mr. Zuo Qigang could barely hide his excitement: “I sold more than 100 units in a month! When I returned home on May 1st, I was so relaxed because I’ve almost completed the sales task.”
In the following three years, annual sales in Gansu achieved year-to-year growth. Mr. Zuo Qigang won the title of “Three Consecutive Years Sales Champion” of SEM, and many secondary dealers in his jurisdiction also developed into primary dealers. It was an era of great sales in Gansu and a blueprint for dealer growth.
With the joint effort of the SEM northwest sales team and Tianshui Hongniu, sales in the Gansu region jumped for three consecutive years. Wherever there are projects, Tianshui Hongniu will send staff into a construction site to help maintain equipment. This support not only ensured timely after-sales service and won the trust of users, it was also instrumental in expanding distribution channels.
In 2014, Tianshui Hongniu won the bid for the road construction project in Tianshui City. The efficient and reliable SEM wheel loaders were a strong presence during the reconstruction of Tianshui’s road network, making significant contributions to Tianshui’s infrastructure construction and development.
In 2015, “Junior Xu” officially took over Tianshui Hongniu. In addition to maintaining customers and exploring new markets, his most demanding task is to lead Tianshui Hongniu with a modern management model. “We must continue to win customers with honesty and integrity, but the model of fighting battles alone still needs to be broken. Only through teamwork can we make substantial progress. Building a comprehensive and stable team and bringing in diverse talent is needed now,” said “Junior Xu.”
“SEM stands out in product reliability and safety. We need to ensure that our services can keep up with the sales. The environment in the northwest region is tough, which creates a need for servicing large machinery. There are mountains in the northwest region, which makes it difficult to drive around. But even in bad weather, we can deliver parts as quickly as possible. We try our best to limit downtime. Only by modern management, always with the customer in mind, can we truly win the hearts of customers.”
An old Chinese saying goes, “Inherited his father’s.” As the relationship between SEM and its dealers now enters its 30th year, a group of young people are taking over the business from the older generation, bringing diverse thought and international wisdom into the industry. They are the “new blood” in the construction machinery industry, but also the inheritors of principles such as honesty, diligence, loyalty and decisiveness from the older generation. The combination of wisdom and foresight is destined to propel the hardware and software upgrading in the construction machinery industry.