RW Crawford investment to benefit southern farmers

Agco main dealer RW Crawford which started trading in Essex in 1980 buying and selling used machinery, recently opened its third depot – extending its coverage to include farmers and contractors in Sussex and Hampshire.

Agco main dealer RW Crawford which started trading in Essex in 1980 buying and selling used machinery, recently opened its third depot – extending its coverage to include farmers and contractors in Sussex and Hampshire.

With its headquarters remaining at South Woodham Ferrers in Essex, in 2013 RW Crawford opened a new depot in Charing, near Ashford, Kent having been appointed by Agco to represent Fendt and Challenger in the area. In 2018, with its original facilities outgrown, a new headquarters at Writtle near Chelmsford, Essex was opened representing considerable investment to ensure users of Agco’s Massey Ferguson, Fendt and Valtra brands receive the sales and after-sales service they need in Essex and east Hertfordshire.

The new depot at Billingshurst is purpose-built with excellent sales and workshop facilities as well as secure storage for new and used machines. Agco Fendt and Valtra brands are offered from the location along with Amazone, Spearhead, HM Trailers, plus new franchise Vaderstad.

Vaderstad products have been added to RW Crawford’s sales and service offering and were displayed for the first time at the open day.

The new territory extends from East Sussex to the M3 in the west and from the south coast it reaches greater London following the M25 into Essex.

Customer loyalty

“From when the company started in 1980 it’s been built on great service and that’s something we plan to continue,” explained managing director, Wes Crawford. “Our new depot at Billingshurst is centrally located in the new operating area, ensuring we can offer the very best back-up to customers and support our full range of premium brands.

“The new trading area is a natural fit with our existing areas, and we have a team of trained mobile technicians based at Billinghsurst already, with additional back-up from our Essex and Kent depot teams also available when needed to minimise machine downtime.

“As a company we are focussed on preventative maintenance and almost every machine sold is backed by an extended warranty. We also offer a range of service packages allowing customers to budget accurately for cost of ownership which also provides peace of mind that machines are serviced on time, and maintained in prime working condition,” he said.

Early demand

Vaderstad southern area territory sales manager, Simon Griffiths emphasised that RW Crawford’s representation of the brand is good news for customers. “We are very pleased to be working with a dealer so keen to get to grips with a sales area where there is so much potential for our products. Already since the open day we have had sales enquiries for our Carrier cultivator with CrossCutter Discs, our Rapid drills and TopDown multi-purpose heavy cultivators,” he said.

First Fendt

Local farmer and open day visitor Andy Kirby placed the depot’s first order for a Fendt tractor. Trading as AK Kirby, the land is a mix of tenanted and contract farmed, and mainly arable, also including 120 Angus beef cattle. “We knew nothing about RW Crawford until we were told by Agco that the dealer was taking on our area. We have used Fendt tractors for many years and, for our new tractor, had been looking at other dealers further afield and even considering other brands. On meeting Wes Crawford we found him easy to deal with and his positive attitude gave us confidence, so we ordered the new Fendt.

“It’s a new relationship but during the past three months the dealer seems to have hit the ground running. It’s a big space to fill but I think the dealer will succeed.”

Positive reception

Wes said early feedback from potential customers had been extremely positive regarding the company’s appointment in the new trading area. “It’s been well received and as well as taking on the repair and service of machinery supplied by the previous dealer, we are receiving enquiries from customers new to our brands. This gives us a great opportunity to let them know about our additional franchises and great service.

“From the new Ideal combine to Katana forage harvesters and Fendt crawlers and sprayers, much of the machinery we supply is quite specialist and has to perform reliably with minimum downtime for repairs and servicing. We have made a significant investment to ensure facilities and a great team are in place at Billingshurst to offer the same service which has earned strong customer loyalty in our other trading areas.”

Wes Crawford said those attending the depot opening made the most of the opportunity to inspect the brands and machinery on offer and to discuss their requirements with the sales and service teams.

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