Construction equipment supplier Bobcat Equipment South Africa aims to become more involved in projects with smaller and emerging construction contractors particularly those linked to either N3 Toll Concession (N3TC) contracts or local municipalities on urban road rehabilitation.

For example, Bobcat supplied an emerging subcontractor with a wheel saw used for cutting concrete along the N3 freeway for drainage in 2017, says Bobcat and SANY brands national operations manager Brian Rachman.

The company has also been involved in an N3TC contract to supply construction and roadwork equipment and machines to the public-sector road management service to be used on upgrades on toll roads in the country.

Rachman says municipalities tend to outsource a lot of work for road patching and repair projects.

“Bobcat would engage with a subcontractor and, if the contract for the road repair project could justify the cost of the machine, Bobcat would then offer an appropriate machine to the subcontractor for municipal work on roads or highways.

“Emerging contracting companies tend to hire and rent equipment, as they generally do not have sufficient funds to buy and own equipment used in road-repair projects.”

While the economic downturn in the South African economy has negatively affected and resulted in reduced spending in the construction sector and on roads projects, he points out an increase in spending for road infrastructure projects that will pay dividends next year.

South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) announced that major road construction tenders, amounting to in excess of R40-billion in value, will be will come to the market in the next two to three years.

This has reportedly been financed through the infrastructure stimulus package announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa last year.

Bobcat supplies equipment and attachments suited to smaller road repair, rehabilitation and patchwork projects.

“Where the Bobcat machines, along with the relevant attachments, would be most useful is with road rehabilitation, particularly for smaller-scale projects; anything from patching to minor resurfacing of patching work, up to about 300 m to 400 m of patching work. That’s where the Bobcat specialises,” he concludes.