Customers in Action

Delta Companies, Williamsville Quarry

POPLAR BLUFF, MO., QUARRY FOCUSES ON PRODUCT QUALITY, CUSTOMER SERVICE AND RELIABILITY

March 26, 2015

Komatsu's WA500 - “a good-working wheel loader”

Delta Companies, Williamsville Quarry

Delta Companies is a major Midwest heavy-highway contractor, paving contractor and materials producer in Missouri, Illinois, Arkansas and Texas. In southeastern Missouri, Delta Companies operates three aggregate locations, including Williamsville Quarry in Poplar Bluff and Dexter Sand & Gravel in Dexter. Both operations supply aggregate products for external customers, as well as internally for Delta’s concrete and asphalt divisions.

“Williamsville is a limestone quarry that’s been here for decades,” said Williamsville Quarry Foreman Dan Cravens. “We make everything from ag lime to asphalt rock to concrete rock to rip-rap for levees. We’re proud of the quality of the products we make and our ability to produce the amount of materials that our customers require.”

Most of the crushed rock from Williamsville goes to MoDOT projects, but a substantial amount is also used for commercial jobs.

“We’ve been fortunate that Poplar Bluff has recently experienced a construction boom,” said Delta Companies Area Manager Mike Martin. “A new hospital was built a couple of years ago, as well as the Eight Points Development, which is a 200-plus-acre project that includes retail, entertainment and professional space. Other new developments and roads are underway too, and last year Poplar Bluff residents passed a $50 million bond issue for school improvements. So all of the building activity has created a strong demand for construction aggregates.”

Martin says Delta Companies has a good reputation with aggregate customers because of product quality, top service and reliability.

“We work hard to make sure everything meets spec. Service-wise, we get customers in and out quickly and provide whatever level of help they might need. As for reliability, it’s about having the product and being here when they need us. We do our best to accommodate the needs of our customers. Another one of our strengths is pre-planning, which allows projects to proceed without a lot of extra hassle.

“For example, if a customer is using outside trucking, we will work with the third party to ensure the customer gets the right product, it’s delivered to the right place and it’s billed properly. That type of attention to detail is one of the reasons our regular customers come back to us. Because of our track record, they are confident that everything will go smoothly.”

Komatsu wheel loaders and Roland support

The Williamsville Quarry primarily uses Komatsu wheel loaders (a WA600-6 and a new WA500-7) for loading trucks. The company also has a WA500-3 at Dexter Sand & Gravel.

“The Dash-3 that we now use at Dexter has been a champ for us,” said Martin. “We’ve had that machine since 2005, and today it has about 25,000 hours on it. We’ve had little to no problems. It’s been a good-working wheel loader, so when we needed another mid-size unit, it was a no-brainer for us to get another Komatsu WA500.

Delta Companies, Williamsville Quarry

“When Delta buys a piece of equipment like a wheel loader, we look for two things,” Martin added. “One, we want to have a good name on it – a brand that has a good reputation and track record for top performance. We get that with Komatsu. The second thing we require is a good vendor that will back us up, and Roland Machinery has been awesome. Cape Girardeau Sales Rep Dan Christensen, Parts and Service Manager Kevin Cox and PSSR Randy Mouser are great to work with. Any technician they’ve sent has been top-notch. Our relationship with Roland is very good.”

Highway funding needed

Martin says at this point, Poplar Bluff is still going strong, but he says within the next few years, he expects the hot construction market in the community to cool down. An even bigger concern, he says, is a lack of highway funding.

“A long-term federal highway bill would be helpful, but the state of Missouri needs to do something too. It could be a rude awakening in another year or two if lawmakers don’t deal with the transportation funding issue. In the meantime, all of us at Delta Companies will focus on things we can control, which is the quality of our products and providing top service to our customers. As long as we continue to do those things, I’m optimistic about our position in the years to come.”