Kubota is a large corporation with a $17 billion annual turnover, which is almost three times that of John Deere; it is not a company that needs be shy of long-term investment.
Entering the mainstream tractor market is not something that happens overnight, the power of branding and the effort expended by the established players to keep newcomers out of a mature market, makes it a tough challenge.
A game of two halves
There are two basic items that need to be in place before any degree of success can be enjoyed – the first is having a good product and the second, and no less important, is having the right distribution network.
As far as the tractors are concerned, Kubota has scaled up the size of its tractors over the last few years to bring to market a range which is as competent and reliable as any other large brand.
It has also steered a slightly different course from other makes in that, rather than pursue power density, squeezing more horses into a smaller frame, it has kept the large four-cylinder engine and built a bigger tractor, offering greater stability around it.
A four-pot motor is inherently more economical than a six-pot unit, which is what the competition requires you to buy if you start looking for much over 150hp in a tractor.
A helping hand from Kubota
Kubota has also taken a slightly different tack when it comes to digital technology, concentrating on helping the driver operate the tractor and implement, rather than focusing on gathering humongous quantities of data, much of which will never be used.
These two features have set the brand apart from the competition, the product is well built and it is distinctive.
The second half of the equation is getting the tractors out there and sold to farmers. To this end, back in March of this year, Kubota appointed FJS Plant Hire of Naas, Co. Kildare, as its latest dealer.
Nearly 30 years in the business
FJS Plant Hire started off in business in 1993 and has been selling the Kubota brand for much of that time.
Adding tractors to its range has brought them into a position of being Ireland’s first dealer to offer the full line-up of the company’s machinery.
To celebrate becoming a one-stop-shop for all things Kubota, FJS held an open day at Mondello Park to give a taste of what they can now offer to the farmer, and those engaged in estate and landscape management.
The company had set out a good selection of compact tractors as well as a handful of larger agricultural units, especially the 7 series which reaches up to 170hp.
Keen to go
Being a relatively new agent and the present issues with supply, means that stock levels are going to be slow to build, so it was an achievement to have the handful of tractors available for viewing.
Despite the full range of machines not being available for inspection there was a great deal of enthusiasm to engage with the farming community.
The company has successfully built up a following within the construction industry which, in Ireland at least, is often closely allied to agriculture with many farmers’ sons taking to the digger rather than tractor.
Based on its experience with Kubota, along with the appointment of specialist agricultural staff, FJS Plant Hire should quickly take the brand forward in the area as they have a good product to sell, and the will to do so.