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Michael Mertes, responsible for the sales and rental in Africa, has highlighted the company’s vision and plan for the rental fleet market in Africa

What have been Maats’ biggest successes?

Relating to the African Market one of Maats’ biggest successes was to design and produce the Welding Tractor SR714 and SR716, one of the most sold welding tractors in the continent of Africa. These welding tractors are based on a Liebherr dozer and changed into a welding tractor by Maats. 

At this moment, Maats has more than 25 units running on jobsites in pre-dominantly desert-like semi-arid conditions in the Sahara. Surviving these harsh environmental conditions is the pinnacle for all machines. On the other hand, the same welding tractors act in -/- 40 degrees surroundings as well, also without problems.

In general, Maats succeeded to build up one of the biggest and youngest rental fleets of pipeline related machines in Europe and in Asia. 

A recent success is the developing of the Maats Internal Bender. This bending machine is designed to bend insulated pipes on the jobsite and from the inside, without breaking the insulation.  

How does Maats stand out from its competitors?

Maats has the youngest rental fleet on the market, as most machines are new or merely a few years old. Furthermore, does Maats have an added value to her customers as Maats can connect them to possible Joint Venture partners, allocate suppliers and let them use her vast network and 30 years of experience in the pipeline construction industry. Another advantage is that machines rented or bought from Maats, can be serviced by the global Liebherr service network since Maats uses Liebherr basic machines and/or Liebherr components. Other rental companies do not have comparable worldwide service possibilities. 

Moreover, Maats is the first rental company that can supply the customer with a CO2-free rental of the pipeline equipment.

What strategies have helped you succeed in the recession?

As during recessions the budgets for purchasing equipment are shrinking, Maats expanded her fleet even more, in order to accommodate the rising demand for rental.

What services will provide growth for Maats?

Most dominantly is our rental service. Customers know us from our quality, reliability and flexibility in the rental business for nearly 40 year already. Besides that, Maats’ service of bending on site with the internal bending machines can be a huge advantage for our customers. 

Also the sale of high quality Used Equipment (not necessarily pipeline equipment) is growing the last years.

What regions have the greatest potential for Maats?

Maats sees the biggest potential in Northern Africa, especially in the countries of Algeria and Libya. Maats has a vast sales experience in both countries and is aware of the local peculiarities and potentials. However, Maats also acknowledges Nigeria and Kenya and several other countries as upcoming Pipeline bearing countries. 

What is the medium-to-long-term plan for Maats in the African region?

The medium-term strategy involves establishing additional rental projects and increasing our brand awareness. To realize this, Maats founded the subsidiary Maats Africa sarl, located in Tunis, Tunisia. Via Maats Africa we can act more direct and more locally. Our local staff members travel every week to different African countries, in order to meet customers and governmental executives. The long-term plan is to build up a “local” (Northern African) rental fleet.