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Busy machine tools team contradicts KZN’s slow economy

Home Metals Machine Tools Busy machine tools team contradicts KZN’s slow economy

THANKS to its highly experienced technical sales support and quality aftersales service, the oldest and one of the largest CNC machine tool and accessory suppliers in South Africa, WD Hearn, is showing rapid growth in KwaZulu-Natal.

Established in 1937, with branches in Durban, Johannesburg, Cape Town and Gqeberha, the company is consistently updated with the latest worldwide machine tool developments and current machine tool technology trends.

“We make a point of understanding all customers’ needs to ensure that professional and customer-specific advice is given to all machine shops, toolrooms and fabrication facilities,” says Graeme Cooper, WD Hearn managing director.

Ray Cooper and George Mills established WD Hearn KwaZulu-Natal over 16 years ago with the appointment of Myles Crosthwaite as the sole agent in KwaZulu-Natal for WD Hearn Machine Tools.

Despite constrained macroeconomic conditions, the growth of the WD Hearn KwaZulu-Natal team has been remarkable. Cooper attributes the recent growth to Crosthwaite’s strong and astute leadership.

“Major installations from our premium brands Kitamura (Japan), Leadwell (Taiwan), MicroDynamics, LK Metrology, NPC Moulders, Sino and Glory Star have all contributed to the establishment of WD Hearn Durban, as a key machine tool supplier in the region,” says Cooper.

In the past few years, key service personnel have joined the team, providing KZN clients with expert aftersales service. “Gerdus Beukes heads the service division, supported by seven technicians. CNC experts Donovan Smidt, Shane Collier and Philani Hlengwa run the CNC division. There has been rapid growth and development with Kyle Crosthwaite in the laser division, and further investment in Brett Shelly and Shane Collier in our expanding plastics division. The skilled WD Hearn Durban team has all basis covered,” says Cooper.

Recent key installations include a host of Hwacheon Y-axis Sub Spindle multi-tasking turning centres into Richards Bay. Kitamura HMCs and 5-axis machines have been installed in the same region, along with a number of LK Metrology CMMs.

In KZN, in this year alone, the company installed a 6000 mm Sino Bridge Type Machining centre; a 12 kW and 15 kW large format sheet laser cutter; a 20,000 rpm precision mould and die machines from Micro Dynamics.

“With his extensive product knowledge and professionalism on the complex CNC sales process, Brandon Scott has been an exceptional appointment to the technical sales team. He has helped to develop the market rapidly. Brad has brought much to the table with the sales team, ensuring a perfectly smooth process throughout the purchase cycle,” says Cooper.

WD Hearn KZN carries extensive stock of Leadwell and Sino CNC Machines and NPC Injection moulders at the branch. There are three more stock machines on the water, along with Glory Start laser cutters, markers and welders.

“The sustained growth of WD Hearn in KZN is proof of their level of service and we look forward to assisting even more clients in the region,” says Cooper.

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