The National Group expands into a turnkey service provider

The National Group is set to realise operational synergies through the addition of heavy equipment valuation and auction house, National Machinery Xchange, into the group.

The National Group is already recognised as owning Queensland-based National Plant & Equipment, one of Australia’s largest suppliers of heavy equipment for hire, but wanted to continue its growth by broadening the services it could offer.

It achieved this in August through the acquisition of Machinery Xchange Solutions, which was then rebranded into National Machinery Xchange (NMX).

NMX identified a market trend where companies preferred to work with bigger groups that could offer a complete solution instead of dealing with multiple smaller companies.

The acquired company was The National Group’s answer to this trend, as it aligned with a strategy to develop a turnkey platform that included auction and valuation expertise.

It also significantly enhanced the group’s ability to deliver innovative, safe and dependable solutions to an expanding client base, both in Australia and internationally.

The National Group’s value chain proposition includes global freight forwarding and shipping, equipment procurement, domestic haulage and road transport, maintenance and repair services, components and attachment sales with the acquisition.

Simon Brown, previously the chief executive officer of Machinery Xchange Solutions, became general manager of NMX following the acquisition, giving The National Group a highly experienced leader for the new division.

The National Group’s managing director Mark Ackroyd said the auction house was highly regarded for its ability to provide an array of customisable auction and valuation services in the transport, earthmoving and heavy equipment sectors.

“Having known Mr Brown both personally and professionally for over 20 years, his knowledge, business acumen and extensive experience is strongly aligned with our national group of companies and as such, he will be an asset in strengthening our position as the industry leader in the mining and construction industries,” Ackroyd said.

The combination of Ackroyd’s network and global reach, with Brown’s expertise and strong relationships with key industry players is creating growth opportunities for the company, while also accelerating its service offering into a more holistic solution.

Brown said becoming part of National Machinery Xchange was also beneficial for his company as it provided an opportunity to better serve customers by putting a driving force with local and international reach behind it.

“We are in a marketplace where service providers are consolidating and by adding NMX it allowed The National Group to expand its service for the mining industry,” Brown told Australian Mining.

“With major mining houses usually contracting 10 to 15 different suppliers on the one site, they are now looking for suppliers who can offer a wider range of services, allowing the mining houses to reduce the amount of contractors on the books, which helps to streamline systems.”

The National Group can now offer a rental component, sale component, transportation services, equipment appraisal and disposal strategies across it’s range of companies.

“With green shoots emerging in mining and many mines opening or reopening, we think we are well placed to be a player on the national stage in regards to diversified sales services.

“Not only can we appraise the equipment, but we do that from the most remote locations in WA to the Eastern Seaboard, We can then table sale strategy recommendations to the client and facilitate disposal of their surplus or obsolete assets.”

Like most industries, auctions have moved online in the past decade, with many buyers enjoying the convenience of being able to bid online.

However, the charm of a traditional auction has not been entirely lost on the industry. NMX has found that bidders are again opting to attend auctions on site rather than just being involved online.

NMX provide multi-channel disposal options including the traditional onsite auction platform supported by ‘live’ simulcast online bidding services; eMarketplace Timed Online Auctions; Private Treaty Sales; and eSealed Tenders.

“With the ability to really ‘see before you buy’ and have a conversation with someone face to face, it’s little surprise this trend is returning. It’s also a positive for Australian businesses, with bidders dealing with Australian based auction houses instead,” Brown said.

NMX will host its first traditional auction at their new Bowen Basin Auction and Selling Centre located at Nebo, Queensland during November. The on-site auction will feature multiple consignments for sale and will be supported by a ‘live’ simulcast online bidding platform.

Its auctions will be held throughout Australia, including at Yatala, Nebo, Emerald (Queensland), the Hunter Valley (NSW), Perth and Karratha (WA).

This article also appears in the November edition of Australian Mining.