Mascus, an online marketplace for used agricultural, construction and transportation machinery, has integrated Denmark and the Czech Republic into its growing international network of websites.
The Finnish-based company has teamed up with Bil Markedet Aps in Denmark and signed a licence agreement with Czech used-car marketplace Webfarm s.r.o. to market its site and offer premium services. The moves mark a continuation of Mascus's ongoing strategy of expanding its network of sites and services through partnership agreements with established national internet marketplaces. The thinking behind Mascus’s approach is simple: “The market for used machinery in the EU is an international one,” explains Petteri Skaffari, Managing Director of Mascus. "Transportation is cheap, so it makes sense for companies to shop around across borders. We provide the technology to make it happen."
The site now allows sellers to enter data on their machinery in Danish and Czech, which can then be accessed by buyers in other countries, also in their own language. But Mascus’s international expansion amounts to much more than localisation of the website. “Translating the website into the local language is only part of the job,” says Skaffari. “Franchise agreements with established local sites strengthen our marketing position and allow us to offer custom services to key clients.”
Bil Markedet, which is contributing 50 % to the joint venture in Denmark, operates Bilbasen.dk, the country’s largest used vehicle marketplace, and Bil Markedet, Denmark’s number one used-car print magazine.
In the Czech Republic, Webfarm s.r.o. owns Cars.cz, the country’s second largest used-car marketplace, and provides web applications to the automotive retail sector. The marketplace will use the Mascus brand and technology, while local partners will be responsible for sales and marketing via their extensive customer base. Through these companies, Mascus plans to gain better access to local retailers and companies in the construction and agriculture industry. “Around 30% of our revenue stems from additional services, including our range of publishing and management tools, and personalized customer support,” Skaffari explains. “It is important for us to have local teams throughout Europe to promote the site and establish long-term partnerships with sellers.”
The company is also working on similar license agreements in Hungary, Romania, Switzerland, Germany and Austria, and plans to cover the entire EU by 2009. (theopenpress.com)