Caterpillar has announced investments in its wholly-owned Chinese subsidiary Shandong Engineering Machinery (SEM), which will see it add dozers to its range and increase its capacity to build wheeled loaders. SEM also makes graders and road building equipment.
Initial production of the SEM-branded dozers is expected to start towards the end of this year, with output ramping-up in 2013 and 2014. In addition to servicing the Chinese market, Catperillar says it plans to export some machines to other emerging markets.
Commenting on the investment, Caterpillar Chairman and CEO Doug Oberhelman said, "China has the largest construction equipment market in the world, and based on China's multi-year plan for continued infrastructure development and economic growth, we are continuing to invest in our operations in China to support our customers and to grow our business. Because of the unique nature and size of the Chinese market, our investments include our Cat-branded products and with this announcement, additional growth and expansion for our SEM brand."
SEM general manager Paul Blackburn added, "We recognise that Chinese customers have different needs across the span of the construction equipment industry and because of that, we will continue to expand our SEM product offerings,"
Caterpillar says that since purchasing SEM in 2008, it has invested to develop better and more reliable wheels loader while increasing production capacity. The company says its latest unspecified investment along with others will triple wheeled loader production capacity by 2014.