Both in the tractor sector and the Full Line sector, Fendt shows steady growth worldwide.
Peter-Josef Paffen, Vice President Brand Director Fendt EME and Chairman of the AGCO/Fendt Management, reports that the company is pleased with its latest market and business developments and in order to stay on its successful track, Fendt continues to invest in research and development and focuses on digitalisation and the Fendt 2020 strategy.
“The economic environment of the European agricultural engineering industry remains positive. The monthly results of the CEMA Business Barometer show a stable boom during the first seven months of 2018”, said Peter-Josef Paffen at the beginning of the recent AGCO/Fendt Press Conference.
However, he pointed out that the slightly declining values of the last four consecutive months may indicate that a peak has been reached. “There are regions in Europe which experienced and are experiencing strong, even excellent crop yields. In Central, North and East Germany, however, there was and is extreme drought. The early harvest and the therewith linked lower yields are taking a toll on the farmers. Now everything depends on how the farmers’ market prices and incomes are going to develop over the next few months.”
For Fendt, the German tractor market remains the most important single market. Around one third of the annual production is delivered to German customers.
“With 3,050 registrations and a market share of 24.2 percent, Fendt took first place in the first half of 2018. That translates to 0.6 percentage points more than a year ago”, said Paffen and pointed out, that the official statistics of the German Federal Motor Transport Authority for tractor registrations is currently influenced by a number of exceptional one-time effects. Due to this, the statistic does not represent the actual market development. The significant decline in new registrations in Germany by 10.7 percent in the first half of 2018 can be traced back to the fact that there was a considerable number of early type approvals in December 2017 and a majority of these tractors, approved under the old EU rules, entered the market in early 2018.
“We are also pleased about the positive market acceptance of large tractors above 300 hp – Fendt 900 and Fendt 1000 Vario. In this segment, Fendt occupies first place with just under 40 percent market share and 366 registrations”, said Paffen and emphasized: “The goal is to further improve Fendt’s market position in Germany by the end of this year.”
Western and Central Europe remains the most important sales region for Fendt. “The improved economic conditions in many regions and product areas within the European agriculture resulted in an increased demand for tractors and agricultural machinery in 2017. This positive development is set to continue in the first half of 2018. We are looking forward to expanding the Fendt market shares in growing markets further. As currently, Fendt is outpacing the market. In 2017 we reached a new high of 8.6 percent and in 2018 we reached the 9 percent mark for the very first time”, said Paffen and explained the reasons for this positive development: “One important reasons for this is our complete and attractive Fendt tractor range from 70 hp up to 517 hp for professionals in all areas. The independent Fendt distribution partners in Europe also play a decisive role in our success. The continuous development and expansion of the Fendt sales network delivers additional thrust. For instance, in the volume markets France and Italy: In France, we are consolidating the third place we achieved for the first time in 2017 with further increases in unit sales and market shares. In Italy, we stand a good chance of increasing the sales of Fendt tractors to more than 1,000 units for the first time in the company’s history. In Poland, the restructuring of the Fendt distribution network is yielding positive results. By the end of 2018, we will have an ubiquitous Fendt distribution network in place. Our goal is to increase Fendt’s market share in Poland by 5 percent over the next few years.”
As announced a year ago, AGCO was able to take over the two locations of Waldstetten and Wolfenbüttel with about 300 employees. At the end of December 2017, a total of 4,928 people were employed at the six AGCO sites in Germany (Marktoberdorf, Asbach-Bäumenheim, Feucht, Hohenmölsen, Waldstetten and Wolfenbüttel). Due to the solid business development, the number of employees increased at all locations. By mid-2018 5,239 people were employed, 311 more than at the end of 2017.
“The Research and Development team is deeply anchored in Fendt’s corporate culture. This is where sustainable products and technologies are created. We now have around 500 engineers working on new and further developments of tractors and forage harvesters. For the first time, the development budget is set to exceed € 70 million this year.”
Paffen also talked about the state of development of the future projects Fendt Xaver Robot, Fendt e100 Vario and Precision Planting: “The Xaver Robot has met with great interest worldwide since its presentation at Agritechnica 2017. Not a week passes without specific requests for interviews, and more detailed information. The Xaver is a system platform for light, high-precision tasks. The system is set to supplement the intelligent large tractor by carrying out certain tasks such as sowing, mechanical weed control, fertilization and plant observation in a more productive, flexible and precise manner.
We plan to use the next development stage of the sowing unit and robot as part of further development in the coming year. Our battery-powered compact tractor Fendt e100 Vario is also generating interest. There were numerous concrete enquiries from municipalities at IFAT in Munich, the world’s leading trade fair for environmental technologies, which took place in May 2018. We are still convinced by our concept.
The current high-performance batteries permit operation of a tractor of about 50 kilowatts in a municipal setting. At the end of the year, we will build the next e100 Vario, which will be ready for deployment in spring. The US company Precision Planting has been part of AGCO Group for a year now.
Precision Planting has stood for innovative sowing technologies for the past 25 years. Special sensors and actuators ensure a precise sowing depth for seeds under changing conditions. The goal is optimal field emergence and higher yields. The systems are set to be tested in Europe for the first time this year. Locally, in Wadenbrunn, Precision Planting technologies were also used for the sowing of the corn area. We are impressed with the high precision, and also convinced that this technology can be usefully used to optimize yields in Europe, he added.”