Machinery dealership McElderrys - Fendt's existing dealer in Northern Ireland and Co. Donegal - will open a new, Fendt-dedicated depot at Lisburn (close to Belfast).

The company's managing director, John McElderry, says that the decision to expand the Fendt territory was driven by the ever-increasing demand for Fendt machines in counties Down, Armagh, Fermanagh and Tyrone.

"This has arisen from our existing ability to provide back-up for Fendt products in Londonderry, Antrim and Donegal from our long-established base in Ballymoney.

"Since taking on the Fendt franchise in 2003," he continued, "we have seen annual sales grow from two-to-three units for Northern Ireland to 30+.

"With today's modern farmer and contractor always looking to maximise efficiency, we believe strongly that the highly-advanced and versatile Fendt range represents the ideal partner."

The McElderry name has been closely associated with Northern Ireland farming for over a century. J K McElderry - the current managing director's grandfather - sold the first tractor in the region in the 1940s.

"This was a big change for him, as he had previously been a breeder and dealer in Clydesdale horses – the modern tractor's predecessor," McElderry explained. The dealership is now a fifth-generation family business, with John's son Robbie working there too.

The company now has 26 staff, many of whom have been with the business since leaving school.

"It's this level of loyalty and experience that has been instrumental in the business being in the position it now holds in Northern Ireland's agricultural machinery trade," he said.

The Massey Ferguson dealership was secured in 1987, a move that John believes really strengthened the company's position in the agricultural sector. However, following Fendt’s acquisition by AGCO, McElderrys was offered the Fendt franchise in 2003.

At that time, he recalls, the Fendt name was little known in Northern Ireland.

"The expansion of the Fendt territory here has resulted in our decision to open a new depot at the Blaris Business Park, in Lisburn - to cater for the ever-increasing demand," McElderry stated.

AGCO's area sales manager for Fendt, Sean Gorman, is enthusiastic in his support for McElderrys expansion. "The opening of a new dedicated outlet at Lisburn will undoubtedly enhance product support and help to grow the volume of Fendt tractors and machines operating on Irish farms," he said.

We are confident that the Open Day (on October 20) at the new Lisburn depot will be well attended and will lead to more widespread appreciation and ownership of these highly-regarded machines.

The Lisburn depot Open Day will run from 10:00am until 6:00pm on Friday and will include a hog-roast from midday onwards.