|The best ideas and engineering solutions are often products of an incorporation of people and companies with different background and experience, but with common goals and ambitions. This is exactly what happened with MAZ-MAN, a joint venture that has been created by Belorussian MAZ plant and MAN concern from Germany.||
"Having different kinds of production allows the company to diversify its business, making it sustainable and strong, during recession times investments in the construction industry shrink, while the agricultural sector continues to grow.” Dmitriy Pershtuk
The joint plant was founded in 1998 by automotive concern MAN, which is well-known in Europe, and one of the largest heavy truck vendors in CIS, MAZ (Minsk Automotive Plant). The idea behind the creation was to combine innovative engine technologies by German company with MAZ’s more than 50 years of experience on the ex-USSR market.
Despite the recession of 1998 that began months after the creation of MAZ-MAN, the plant never stopped its work, constantly increasing both staff count and production figures. It started with one tractor unit model with 4x2 axle configuration. Now the plant’s lineup consists of some 10 tractor units and dump trucks, as well as front loaders.
MAZ-MAN employs some 300 people. In 2011, the plant will produce about 150 trucks and 170 loaders, while the maximum production capacity is 2000 one-type 4x2 tractor units and 250 front loaders.
The joint venture is located in Minsk, not far from its “parent” MAZ plant. Basically, at MAZ-MAN there are only R&D and assembling facilities, while all the metalworking is done by contractors, including MAZ. Also, MAZ supplies the plant with components, such as axles and engines for front loaders. Trucks produced by the plant are based on MAN D08 and D20 engines.
Currently, MAZ-MAN offers a wide variety of vehicles with axle configurations 4x2 and 6x4. These formulas mean, respectively, the total number of wheels and the number of driven wheels. The vehicles are traction units and dump trucks, which may be additionally equipped to work in extreme conditions.
For instance, the plant ships traction units to Northern regions with minimal working temperature of -50℃. They are fitted with additional thermal insulating and independent cabin heating units, as well as reinforced suspension and radiator and headlamp guards.
Apart from trucks, the plant produces front loaders under BME trademark that are fitted with engines made in Belarus. They can serve different purposes depending on attached implements, such as logging blade, fork, open-side grapple, milling cutter for road surface repairs, etc.
Having different kinds of production allows the company to diversify its business, making it sustainable and strong, said Dmitriy Pershtuk, CFO at MAZ-MAN, adding that “during recession times investments in the construction industry shrink, while the agricultural sector continues to grow.”
BME front loaders still remain a product for the local market with plans on debuting in Russia, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine, where the plant has already established a service network. The loaders comply with European emission and noise standards, as well as non-written requirements to ergonomics, comfort, and overall quality.
Industry and Market
In turn, both local and global markets of heavy automotive production are growing steadily, Mr. Pershtuk said. Despite some fluctuations on the CIS market during last years related to instability in the construction industry, the overall trend doesn’t seem to change in the near future, while the speed of growth may differ significantly between countries.
Also, the plant is raising private investments from CIS countries in order to move on. According to Mr. Pershtuk, MAZ-MAN is going to create a network of assembling plants in different countries that would make logistic operations more simple and efficient. This qualitative shift will make a significant milestone in the company’s development.
Andrii Degeler. J.
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