It wasn’t only the annual Customer Appreciation Day at Wesco Inc. Tractors and Equipment held in late March. It also was a form of international diplomacy, international business and a new family partnership launched.
One Italian construction equipment business family came to Norwalk, Conn., to spend two weeks with another. Brothers Armando and Sandro Cormidi, two of the managing partners of the family-owned Cormidi line of track skid loaders, track dumpers and other European equipment, introduced their new line to local customers of the Testa family’s Wesco Inc.
Wesco Inc. celebrated 25 years in business in 2010. Bob Testa started the company in 1985 after working for 15 years as a sales manager for John Deere. His son Adam, general manager, has spent his entire life around earth moving machines, first learning to steer a few at the age of five.
“The news today is that we are introducing the Cormidi line to the United States. It has been used in Europe for 18 years,” said Adam Testa. “These are not new products, or experimental, by any means. Four Cormidi brothers own the company. Two of them flew here for two weeks from Salerno, Italy, to answer customer questions. We are going to be their U.S. distributor and complete parts supplier.”
Bob and Adam Testa said that their company has always catered to small and mid-size contractors looking for the kind of equipment offered by Cormidi.
“We have a wide array of customers who use this type of equipment. We were searching for a niche product, something other than the typical equipment,” said Adam Testa. “They have been using this equipment in Europe for many years. It is a product that really holds up. The last thing we would do is bring a product here that is not tested or is unproven. That was our biggest concern. We would never let our customers be guinea pigs for some new-fangled product that looked nice, but didn’t perform. We would never get a customer angry [over such a product] because it is our reputation that suffers. They trust us not to steer them wrong.”
The Testa family has been negotiating with the Cormidi brothers for many months to strike the deal as their U.S. representatives.
Bob Testa knew he had the right line to import. “We were looking for a product line that fits our business operation. We tend to sell to small to intermediate sized contractors, pavers, landscapers, light to medium construction. We looked at other company lines and we found the Cormidi line out of Italy. We made contact with them. We discussed our business plan and thoughts. They needed to see what kind of dealership we were. It was a great fit. The fact that we are a father-son business and they are four brothers, we struck an immediate bond. With that, we shook hands and they asked me to become their distributor. Our long-term goal is to set up dealerships throughout the country.”
“We started talking with the Testa family in September. In November, we started meeting,” said new partner Armando Cormidi. “We agreed to begin in March, to push into the American market. In Europe, we produced for YANMAR YCEE. We are also selling in Canada. We believe the market is now good to start. That people are now confident to begin investing in the economy and products again.”
In front of dozens of loyal and potential customers over the March 26-27 weekend, Sandro Cormidi and Wesco workers demonstrated the IronCat series of Cormidi earth movers. On display, were impressive technology and multi-functioning tasks, like load sensing power, hi-flow hydraulics, effortless controls and visibility in its spacious cab, with multi-attachment capabilities.
“We really wanted to emphasize the technology,” said Adam Testa. “The track dumpers have a multi-pump system powered by a Honda engine. You can activate every function at the same time, simultaneously, while performing at full power, like steering and dumping or steering and lifting.”
On the track loaders, he said, the CPU engine has continuous management of all systems.
“The machine monitors the amount of bucket force, track force, system pressure, engine RPM, the operating temperatures and hydraulic output simultaneously,” said Testa. “The IronCat continually adjusts the torque of the drive motors and engine RPM to push through. You cannot stall this thing.”
Testa said reactions over the Customer Appreciation and introduction weekend have been “extremely positive.”
For more information about Wesco, Inc. and their new Cormidi earth moving line, visit www.wesco-inc.com.
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