The Eastern Cape's largest electrical supplier believes good times lie ahead - and they are ready to Rock(well)!
Trading through 60 years of highs and lows, Port Elizabeth-based electrical supplier Haslop & Mason is a company well positioned to realise that when the economy gets tough, the tough must get growing.
"Nobody can deny that the economy has been in a slump," said managing member Kevin Dersley.
"But while there may not have been many big projects in the Eastern Cape over the last few years, we feel that change is coming. Sentiment has definitely changed since the elections."
Key to overcoming the slump has been concentrating on the customer base that Haslop & Mason has serviced since 1958.
Having started out as an engineering workshop, the company is now 100% devoted to sales, servicing the whole of the Eastern Cape with nine premium international electrical brands.
"Basically, we supply the components to anyone in industry who uses electricity," Dersley said.
"We want to build relationships with our customers where they buy from us not just once in a while, but every day where possible. To achieve this, we have spent what has been a sluggish economic period concentrating on making our service as efficient and prompt as possible.
"The failure of a relatively inexpensive component could cause a huge loss of revenue at any of our customers. Therefore, we are keenly aware of the need to be accessible on a 24/7 basis."
Another key component of the company's success is spending quiet time training and upskilling staff, from those handling the logistics to the key sales team, ensuring that customers get the best service possible and that products are easily available.
Heading up the sales team is Carlos Pedrosa who, along with 2019 top salesman Dewald le Roux, will be accompanying a selection of leading Rockwell Automation customers to the Rockwell Automation Fair in Chicago, USA, in November.
The annual international fair showcases a wealth of innovative technologies and trends, ensuring that Haslop & Mason customers are kept abreast of the latest developments.
"It's a great opportunity for both ourselves and our customers to network with international peers," said Pedrosa.
"Rockwell Automation is the rock on which we built our company, so it is great that we can share their latest developments when we return to South Africa."
Having his fingers on the sales pulse has left Pedrosa upbeat about the future and where the company stands at the moment.
"We have done really well in a gloomy economy," he said, adding that Haslop & Mason's sales year had thus far "exceeded expectations".
"Since the elections, things have become more positive; there's talk of investment in the area again."
Pedrosa said operating in a competitive sector meant that it was vitally important to stay ahead of the game.
"One of the ways we achieve this is by attending the automation fair, which is a mine of innovative technology and trends.
"By networking with delegates from global engineering companies, we help to put South Africa on the map. It is surprising to learn that many of the people we meet know all about Nelson Mandela, but are barely aware of our country's existence."