Peterbilt Model 567 is Latest Addition to Beran Concrete Fleet of Mixers
In the vast flatlands of Central and Western Kansas, earning the distinction of being the largest concrete flatwork contractor[link to: link to: beranconcretedesign.com/] in the state is a significant achievement. It’s even more impressive when you consider that in the early 80’s when the company was founded by Ken Beran, it was primarily a residential contractor.
Now, thanks to the vision and entrepreneurship of son Brock, who purchased the company outright shortly after graduating in Construction Design and Management from Kansas State University, the firm is operating at an 80/20 commercial to residential blend. In fact, from 2008 to 2012, Beran [link to: beranconcretedesign.com/]quadrupled in size – all attributable to an expanded footprint in commercial markets. The performance of an all-Peterbilt fleet has helped propel current annual revenues into the $35 million range – and growing by a healthy 15 percent per year.
“That kind of explosive growth required a disciplined approach to systems, processes, and the right people on board to maintain the quality standards and impeccable reputation we’re known for,” he says. “Because commercial concrete jobs were in short supply at that time in our economic cycle, there was competitive pressure on pricing, which forced us to become extremely efficient – we were running fast and hard. Thankfully, I was surrounded by guys like Zeb Jolly and James McNaul, who I literally grew up with and are now part of the Beran leadership team. It also meant building a strong partnership with Peterbilt and our local Peterbilt dealer.”
The Beran fleet consists of 15 Peterbilt Model 365s powered by the PACCAR MX-13 engines in mixer configurations. The newest member of the fleet is the Peterbilt Model 567. Currently used in a dump application, the set-forward front axle configuration Model 567 is ideally suited for the next generation of Beran mixers offering a tight turning radius for superior maneuverability on residential jobs, and maximum payload capacity for commercial projects. Already, drivers are giving the truck high marks.
“I average about 300 miles a day delivering sand for backfill to our jobsites, and at the end of the day, I feel great,” says Greg Haines. “The automatic transmission, along with the cab creature comforts, makes this vehicle a pleasure to drive.”
“This is the smoothest truck I’ve ever driven,” echoes driver Raul Jimenez. “I’ve had 400 mile days, and I never get tired. And, the visibility through the windshield helps me feel safe and confident when hauling and dumping loads.”
Buy or Build
Seeing a continuing trend of consolidation of Redi-mix providers, resulting in 30 percent price increases, Beran made a game-changing decision.
“I couldn’t envision a scenario where we’d have long-term success competing against concrete suppliers who had their own paving divisions,” he says. “So, we knew we either had to buy a Redi-mix plant or build one. We chose to build one.”
The Beran plant was built in an astonishing 6 months’ time and currently produces more than 300 yards of material per hour. Not surprisingly, the fleet of Beran Peterbilt trucks are the only ones you’ll see at the facility.
“We’ve never sold a yard of concrete,” he says. “Most any time of the day, there’s a line of Peterbilt mixers stacked bumper-to-bumper waiting to be loaded. Some are headed to residential jobs like backyard patios, swimming pool decks or foundations. The majority are headed to large commercial construction projects including airports, hotels, corporate offices, parking garages, to name a few.”
Redi-mix Plant Manager Jared Ackerman, explains how aligning with Peterbilt as a supplier partner has been a great match.
“Custom spec’ing is huge for us,” he says. “Because we operate in both residential and commercial markets, we are at the same time concerned about ground clearance around curbs, being able to get in and out of tight work spaces, but also about maximizing payloads, having the right axle configurations, the right transmission for our applications and an engine that delivers performance and fuel efficiency, which the PACCAR MX-13 gives us.”
Brock Beran has instilled a company-wide pursuit and adherence to three fundamental operating principles: Quality. Efficiency. Reputation.
“I sincerely believe that in terms of quality, we are the best, most efficient concrete contractor in the country of our size and capabilities,” he says. “That combination, made possible by our 200-plus Beran family of employees, and the performance of our diverse fleet of properly spec’ed Peterbilt vocational equipment, has earned us an unmatched reputation in the industry and among our customers.”
To that point, the Beran organization does not have a sales staff on the payroll. Whether you’re a project manager, concrete laborer or truck driver, you are a representative of the company and keeper of the reputation. According to Beran, the same is expected from suppliers.
“We use suppliers whose priorities are aligned with ours. We must be able to count on our suppliers, so there’s a high trust factor,” he says. “Our customers place the same trust in us to deliver a superior product, and the same applies to our suppliers and equipment.”
“I have complete confidence that every one of our people on any jobsite anywhere, will uphold the Beran Concrete reputation, he concludes. “And the image that our Peterbilt fleet portrays to our customers is an important part of our reputation for quality. A company that preaches quality and reputation is making a customer promise. Peterbilt and our Peterbilt dealer help us keep that promise – every time.”