Steelbro’s post-GFC strategy

From the September 2011 issue.

The traumatic New Zealand earthquake cut straight to the heart of the island country. But, the recovery effort is on track and for Christchurch based company, Steelbro, the focus now is on continuing to move forward – and to arouse international attention in a positive way.

Located in Sockburn, eight kilometres west of Christchurch’s vibrant city centre, the 133-year-old company escaped the catastrophe by a whisker.  “The Steelbro head office was largely unaffected by the quake,” says General Manager of global sales, Steve James. “Power and communications were quickly restored and minor building damage repaired. Some partner suppliers experienced a greater impact on their operations, though and this had a knock- on effect for Steelbro with some production days lost.”

But, the Christchurch earthquake was only one unexpected challenge the country has faced in recent times. The economy has been just as shaky. “New Zealand’s economic recovery lacked traction in 2010 and there were concerns that the impact of the earthquake could slow it down further,” says James. “However, recent data has been encouraging. We have seen a 40 per cent increase in sales in the past 18 months and continue to see sales growth. At the moment, Steelbro holds 70 per cent of the local side loader market and approximately 50 per cent on a global scale.”

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