Tuesday, December 5, 2023

East Yorkshire excavator bucket manufacturers set up US distribution network

East Yorkshire-based Rhinox Group Ltd has taken turnover from £3.5 to £17m in just five years, increasing sales of its excavation buckets and attachments five-fold since its launch in 2018, and is now aiming even higher having set up a distribution network in the United States which will cut delivery times from weeks to days in a game-changing market.

The business is using technology to drive its campaign, with Hull-based performance marketing agency 43 Clicks North already delivering on a comprehensive e-commerce programme.

Sales Director Will Hooper said: We evolved from a plant spares business and had been selling our products under the Rhinox brand since about 2014. We made big changes in 2018, renaming the business after the successful brand, committing to continuous improvement and taking turnover to £17m.

“We are aiming to reach £50m in the next three years, and some of that will come from the US as a result of our investment in our own distribution network over there.”

Rhinox employs more than 40 people, including about 30 at North Newbald near Beverley, where the site has been transformed from traditional farm buildings to an HQ for manufacturing, storage and all back-office functions.

The company also has exclusive manufacturing agreements at third-party factories in India and Eastern Europe and has remote sales staff in Tunbridge Wells, Ipswich, India and the Philippines. The new distribution network in the US will be supported by its own sales team.

Josh Sprakes, Marketing Manager at Rhinox, said work began during 2022 on raising the profile of the Rhinox brand in the US with 43 Clicks North, based in the Old Town of Hull, selected to develop the existing e-commerce strategy.

Josh said: Because of the work we have done there is already a lot of awareness of Rhinox in the US and the distribution deal will boost customer confidence because they know the product is already in the country.

“Instead of having to fly the orders in we can land-freight them across the US and reduce delivery times from three to four weeks down to five or seven days and maybe quicker.

“Our approach to ecommerce is unusual in our industry and has also helped us make a lot of progress in the UK in a short space of time compared to competitors who have been out there for 30 or 40 years. We have gone from being an outlier in the market to the UK top two in various product categories.

“There are not many others doing it on the scale that we have adopted. After Covid we took the decision to look at other markets. We set up a website in the US and started to get somewhere, and then we felt we needed a partner to help us take our ecommerce strategy to another level.”

Mike Ellis, Managing Director of 43 Clicks North, said he was attracted to Rhinox because of the company’s track record of ecommerce success.

He said:” The exciting part for us is that this is a traditional B2B industry but the way they have set it up is B2B2C – ultimately they are pitching and marketing a strong brand to the end user to build demand for the network of dealers.

“When we looked at Rhinox we saw a huge opportunity to drive performance through brand recognition. Usually B2B businesses are a lot further behind us in their approach to speaking to the end user but Rhinox already had two working ecommerce sites.

“There’s a lot of work to do but it’s clear the ambition is there and it’s a good fit. As soon as you get to the end user everything else becomes easier.”

Will said Rhinox will continue to build its UK business while preparing the ground for “mega-exciting” opportunities in the US.

He said: “We are more established in the UK so we will keep chipping away because there is a lot more we can do here. In the US we think brand strategy is key and we are very much scratching the surface of a mega-exciting market that’s worth hundreds of millions of dollars.”

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