Having experienced substantial success in its generators division in 2014, engine, pumps and power products distributor Goscor Power Products has increased its focus on supplying standby diesel generator units to small businesses.
Goscor Power Products MD Mark Bester tells Engineering News that the company has introduced an H-Power diesel generator – available in 10 kVA and 12 kVA – to fill the price gap between the 5 kVA to 15 kVA generator sets currently available on the market.
He believes these 10 kVA and 12 kVA generators, manufactured by Chinese export-orientated light-construction-equipment company Anhui H-Power Machinery Company, will be suitable for fuel stations, medium-sized retailers and larger residences.
“Goscor Power Products is aiming to supply small business and industry with quantity, as these sectors suffer significantly from the current electricity instability and intermittent load-shedding in South Africa.”
Bester tells Engineering News that, amid these challenges, these sectors specifically require medium-sized, reliable generators, adding that there has been an increase in orders for the company from automotive dealerships, which are gradually acquiring standby power for their countrywide branches.
While companies have not always principally budgeted for generators, the electricity constraints on the national grid have forced them to prioritise funding for standby power to survive, he adds.
Bester emphasises the increased need for reliable generators with economic fuel consumption, adding that another key requirement for small business is that the machines operate silently.
The most popular generator model that Goscor currently supplies to the small business industry is the Lutian LT25, or 25 kVA, diesel generator. This model is manufactured and exported by generator manufacturer China Lutian Machinery Company.
Since Goscor Power also caters for residential standby power, its most popular model is the 6.5 kVA Lutian LT8000EA-1 generator, Bester adds.
“This model is ideally suited to the residential market in terms of its power output, as it can run most of a home’s electrical appliances, owing to a special feature, called automatic voltage regulation, to protect electrical devices. Moreover, the generator is fuel efficient, safe and easy to operate.”
He further reveals that Goscor has sold nine 40 ft containers of generators since December 2014, also noting that the company has another nine containers on order, which it supplied to the market in March and will continue to do until May.
Demand for Standby Support
While renewable energy is currently “a nice buzzword”, with ample industry interest in grid independence, Bester argues that green alternative power still amounts to significant expenditure and investment, which is why diesel generation remains preferable.
However, he acknowledges that customers are forgoing the more famous, popular and expensive brands of diesel generators in favour of the lesser-known, more affordable brands. “The better-known brands are expensive and their sales have decreased, compared with those of other brands that are better priced.”
Meanwhile, Bester notes that large market retailers have taken advantage of the market gap in terms of generator supply, though he believes that these retailers face several obstacles in terms of their product offering and sales cycle, which includes the ability to size the generator correctly according to customers’ needs, and the need for high-quality and durable machines.
As these issues are exacerbated by the lack of support in repairs and a spare parts net- work, Bester maintains that customers prefer the services of authorised dealers, which complete the sales cycle, as they offer different product ranges, advice, as well as installation and backup support.
However, owing to the significant demand for stock availability because of the recent unstable electricity supply and generators mainly being imported, the generator industry is currently under pressure to fulfil market demand, says Bester.
He concludes, however, that Goscor’s suppliers can produce and supply orders within two months – a rate which is almost twice as fast as that of other suppliers.