Heritage Tractor is not just in Kansas Anymore
Dealership powers through pandemic to make overseas sales
Heritage Tractor is a 21 store John Deere Dealership based in Baldwin City, Kansas, with other stores in Missouri, Kansas and Arkansas, and trade territory expanding to Nebraska and Oklahoma. In February 2020, Kurt Miller, Director of Sales for Heritage Tractor connected with the U.S. Commercial Service (CS) Kansas City team as the company started thinking strategically about international sales. Heritage’s focus was on building long-term partnerships instead of reacting to one-off inquiries. To accomplish this, Heritage expressed an interest in customized market research to help identify where to focus their international efforts.
Based on the client’s interest in market research, CS Kansas City staff suggested a conversation with the Rural Export Center in Fargo, North Dakota. The joint call was scheduled to discuss customized market research projects through the Rural America’s Intelligence Service for Exporters (RAISE) program. Following this informational call, Heritage Tractor registered to participate in the RAISE market research, including a Matrix, Polling, and a 3-Country Research Report. “To start building relationships globally with no experience is very overwhelming and ends up with potential time wasted and time spent in the wrong areas. Utilizing US Commercial Services has enabled us to be better at what we do: focusing on building relationships and selling machinery. Working with US Commercial Services out of Kansas City and the Rural Export Center has helped us have a bullseye approach with selling globally,” said Miller.
Based on the results of the RAISE matrix and additional outreach, Heritage selected Ukraine as a market with strong potential for used agricultural equipment. They conducted an International Partner Search (IPS) in Ukraine to help with the initial goal of long-term sales partnerships. In July 2020, an initial consultation call was held with CS Ukraine’s to discuss the IPS feasibility and provided the final report in September 2020. Because of COVID, Heritage plans to more pro-actively pursue additional partnerships once they can travel more freely and meet in person.
In February 2021, Heritage was contacted by a Ukrainian company about a potential partnership. The buyer was one of the companies from the original IPS. Heritage proceeded with the sale and has increased the open opportunities for them to continue selling used equipment into Ukraine, fulfilling their original goal.
For more information about RAISE research, click here.