United Tractor & Equipment (Private) Limited, also known as UTE, provides engineering solutions to all Sri Lankan industries. Being the sole business superbrand contender in the ‘general machinery’ category highlights that there is no single company that can provide such a vast array of machinery. The UTE is active in the following markets:
- Construction Machinery
- Power Generation
- Material Handling and Storing
- Welding Equipment and Engineering Solutions
Apart from these mainstream markets, UTE’s biggest strength is its superior product support, hence the tagline “The journey continues… long after the sale”.
Caterpillar features prominently in all these markets, showing the obvious synergy created by the unique CAT/Dealer relationship.
The Journey Continues… Long After the Sale
Machinery provided to a business cannot be sold and forgotten. UTE has proven time and time again that it stands by its work. In the last 6 decades, there are over 50 employees who have reached 25 years of service at UTE. There are also many Cat machines and engines still in service after more than 40 years.
Quality and Integrity
The UTE brand has always stood for quality and integrity, meaning that customers can be sure that they have zero risk when purchasing a product or service. A large and reliable rental fleet has also meant that even before the new equipment arrives, UTE is able to support its customers, in times of need.
Engineering Services to Engineering Solutions
Over the years, the brand position has evolved from Trading and Distributing to Engineering and Consulting. Turnkey solutions are offered, where 100% of the equipment is imported or fabricated by UTE.
One Safe Source
While some organizations send customers from pillar to post to get product support, UTE is able to source parts and has the necessary technical expertise for all of its products.
The Premium Supplier
No doubt about it, unmatched quality and reliability comes at a price. UTE is first choice for engineers in any top company in Sri Lanka.
Quality People and Equal Opportunity
UTE has produced some of the greatest business people in Sri Lanka. Every employee, regardless of pay grade faces final interviews by a shareholder of the company and is hired without prejudice against their race, sex, religion or disabilities.
Juxtaposition of Caterpillar and its Dealers
The UTE logo, which is a combination of United Tractors and CAT shows the unique relationship that Caterpillar has with its dealers worldwide. Though completely separate entities with separate owners, the CAT Dealer is considered an extension of Caterpillar. This relationship means that UTE must live up to the expectations of Caterpillar itself, which is amongst the top 100 brands in the world.
22nd March 1947
A new company was born whose main purpose was handling the Sales and After Sales Service of the Caterpillar Tractor Company in Ceylon. The name of this new company was UNITED TRACTOR & EQUIPMENT LIMITED. They were the first Ceylonese company to import heavy construction machinery
Founding Chairman Mr.W.D.Fernando passed away, his son Mr.Pin Fernando becomes the Chairman
UTE suffered due to import restrictions. However UTE proves it’s tenacity by entering into a simple agreement with the Tractor Corporation and Caterpillar to continue serving existing CAT® equipment users and selling other types of equipment.
UTE regained the Cat dealership as import restrictions were eased subsequent to the 1977 market liberalization
A Golden era for UTE as more and more machines were supplied for mega projects including the Mahaveli project. The monopoly is over for Caterpillar as increased demand attracts new competitors.
The next generation takes over as Mr.Pin Fernando passes away; his son Mr.Priath Fernando moves to the top.
The country plunges into unforeseen darkness due to electricity board employees going on strike. UTE sets a new record in its history in Asia by selling a record number of generators in a calendar year. Some employees worked for days without sleep to ensure that their existing customers had generators in working order.
Introduction of 6 Sigma as a core management philosophy at UTE
UTE’s Journey Continues as the provider of the best engineering products and services and completes its Diamond Jubilee with the launch of a new corporate brand image. The corporate crest launch was attended by many of Colombo’s leading business figures.
Cat has patented its new (Advanced Combustion Emissions Reduction Technology) ACERT™ design for more efficient and environmentally friendly equipment, surpassing all benchmarks.
UTE becomes one of the first Dealers in the region to sell an ACERT™ Engine.
UTE is the only company in Sri Lanka to have a fully qualified 6 Sigma Master Black Belt.
UTE was chosen as the only Business Superbrand in the General Machinery category.
After the end of Civil War Sri Lanka is experiencing a rapid economic growth. The Construction sector is driving the development effort and UTE is at the forefront of this journey.
As a B2B brand, promotion has normally been done by direct mailers, exhibitions, personal selling and other targeted forms of advertising. However, shortly after the 1996 power crisis UTE won awards for its mass media advertising with the “Power Cut 2” campaign.
Through out UTE’s history, its brand ambassadors have been the highly skilled and professional workforce, which have impressed customers of all types and sizes. Larger customers are visited by UTE’s unique Customer Support Engineers, while smaller customers have been rewarded with loyalty cards.
More recently, it was decided to upgrade UTE’s promotional brand image to match the quality of its product support and service. This was done in several ways:
Since 2009 UTE has been the main Sponsor for Construct exhibition which is easily the biggest construction industry trade show in the Country .
UTE’s main supplier, Caterpillar, is in the top 100 brands listed in Fortune magazine. If one were to analyse this list, they would find only a handful of business (B2B) brands. The biggest communicator of this brand is the product itself. Apart from that Caterpillar has tried to project a unique image by maintaining a common look and feel in all its promotions.
Caterpillar has also used a unique way of promoting its brand through clothing. Now it is difficult to say whether the Cat clothing brand is popular because of machines or vice-versa. However these products uniquely complement each other by maintaining their rugged yet appealing looks.
THINGS YOU DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT UTE…
A Record Partnership
UTE’s second Chairman Mr. Pin Fernando was and is still considered the greatest golfer Sri Lanka has ever produced. Adding to his countless Sri Lankan National Championships, he was also the first foreigner to win the Indian National Championship. His wife Pam, is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the oldest National Champion – also for golf.
Truly International Warranty
UTE has sent its own technicians as far as Italy to complete a warranty repair for one of its marine customers when the local dealer was unable to solve the problem satisfactorily
The Average time for UTE to air freight and clear orders is 4 days. There have been instances when UTE has been able to organize emergency airfreight and delivery of spare parts from Singapore within 12 hours of our customers’ request. This highlights Caterpillar’s unparalleled support and logistics services.