Permanent Problem-Solver - A Closer Look
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SECTION: A Closer Look

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Permanent Problem-Solver

Written By: Mary Sedor

Article Date: 02-01-2007
Copyright(C) 2008 Associated Equipment Distributors. All Rights Reserved.

AlturnaMATS is looking for AED dealers to represent its products throughout the world.

You've seen it before - plywood placed on the ground of a jobsite to help move the equipment and save the ground below. After only a few uses, the boards crack and have to be replaced. AlturnaMATS provide a unique solution to this common problem.

AlturnaMATS are heavy-duty polyethylene mats designed specifically for this purpose. Created 12 years ago, the mats are a permanent solution. And unlike plywood, AlturnaMATS have a six-year guarantee against breakage.

Another thing that sets them apart from plywood and alternative methods is the diamond cleat design that provides excellent traction no matter the ground conditions. The mats prevent equipment from sticking in soft ground and prevent damage to the ground underneath.

"The original concept of AlturnaMATS," says Gerald Harry, national sales manager, "is to allow you to move your equipment over whatever ground conditions you encounter in a cost-effective manner. The diamond cleat design on both sides provides excellent traction. The top side provides great wheel traction, while the bottom side cleats prevent the mats from sliding."

The company manufactures three different types of mats: the original AlturnaMATS, VersaMATS and the Out-Rigger mat, and the uses are limitless. They've been used in such diverse places as the tropical rainforest in Brazil; for glacial exploration in Tibet; and at Penn State University, Michigan State University and the Bellagio Resort in Las Vegas.

Three years ago AlturnaMATS introduced VersaMATS in response to customer requests. The bottom side has the signature diamond cleat design, but the top side has a new flat pedestrian slip-resistant design. VersaMATS are ideal for a wide variety of applications wherever pathways, parking areas and vehicle movement are considerations.

"More and more jobs are requesting contractors use these types of mats as temporary walkways," says Harry, "because they provide safe passage for both equipment and pedestrians."

The company's new Turn-A-Links connect AlturnaMATS or VersaMATS together. Single Turn-A-Links connect mats end to end, while doubles connect four mats together. The links are made of rugged ½-inch round hot roll steel and are also available in flat hot roll steel, ¼-inch thick x ¾-inch wide.

"We take a proactive approach to our products," says Harry. "We work hard to ensure our dealers and ultimately the end users have the products they need to make their jobs easier. Our products are problem-solvers. We listen to the market and the customer, and try to respond to their needs."

AlturnaMATS is currently introducing a new product line, the Out-Rigger pads. These pads feature solid construction of an ultra-high density material and are available in a variety of sizes. The mats are smooth on the outrigger side and feature cleats on the ground side for a non-slip surface. They also come with a lifetime replacement guarantee: If for any reason an Out-Rigger pad breaks, it will be replaced.

Schaaf Equipment in Bridgeview, Ill., carries AlturnaMATS.

"We saw the product at an equipment show and immediately thought of one of our customers," says Dan Schaaf. "We knew this would be the perfect product for them."

According to Schaaf, that customer ordered 400 mats on their first order.

"This product really works," he says. "My customer re-lines sewers, and he's constantly in people's back yards. With the AlturnaMATS, they can bring the equipment in and leave the same day, and you can't even tell they've been there. It's incredible."

Schaaf says the mats are also very effective at preventing the equipment from getting stuck in the mud.

"If the ground is mushy, it's no big deal, you have something stable to drive on," he says.

Schaaf recommends white Versa- Mats, because on a hot day they help keep the grass underneath green longer.

"VersaMATS are more pedestrian-friendly," he says. "Not only are they good for trucks, they're good for people walking with wheelbarrows. They're very versatile."

Expanding The Dealer Network

AlturnaMATS markets exclusively through its dealers. The company is actively looking for new dealers to represent its products throughout the world. They want AED dealers in particular, because AED dealers exemplify excellence and they reach the end user.

The company provides its dealers with a marketing support program, consisting of an exceptional lead referral program, high quality promotional materials, and a professional, easy-to-read sales manual.

"Any time I have a question or problem I can contact the company and have an answer right away," says Schaaf.

"They're very easy to work with and respond to my needs immediately."

AlturnaMATS also has a website with a secured section where dealers can order parts and track orders. And the company maintains an active national and international trade show presence.

"Heavy equipment and AlturnaMATS go hand in hand," says Harry. "There's nothing better than to have something new to show a customer that can save him time and money. For AED member dealer sales reps, being a problem-solver is an important part of their jobs. Our products provide another way sales reps can provide solutions. The mats also work well for rental operations."

"We offer our dealers excellent support," says Harry, "and we don't sell direct."

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