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Hastings Deering: Caterpillar's largest dealer network in Australia

Legend has it that the opportunity to launch one of Australias most impactful organizations occurred by chance: Harold Hastings Deering, a British-based...

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|Aug 30|magazine9 min read

Legend has it that the opportunity to launch one of Australia’s most impactful organizations occurred by chance: Harold Hastings Deering, a British-based fighter pilot during WWI, reportedly landed his plane in an AEC factory yard and refused to leave until the company had agreed to let Deering distribute their trucks and buses throughout Australia.

Sounds more like a seized opportunity than an optimized occurrence.

Founded in 1932, the Hastings Deering Group has spent the last 80 years successfully navigating the mining and construction sectors by maintaining a similar sense of ambition and vision. Today, with nearly 5,000 employees spread across four countries, Hastings Deering is the largest Caterpillar dealer network in Australia, and one of the brand’s premier distributors across the globe.

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This “one-stop-shop” offers the highest quality equipment, parts and attachments as well as support-based services that include maintenance, repair and technical training, to the mining and construction sectors.

Hastings Deering also applies innovative, technology-enabled solutions to these offers so as to help customers improve productivity, safety and profit.

“Our organization is here for a reason, and that is to make our customers better at what they do,” explained CEO Dean Mehmet, who joined Hastings Deering in 2012 with an impressive background that included senior roles at BlueScope Steel and Shell Australia.

Industry challenges

Mehmet’s intimate knowledge of the industry coupled with his passion for leading others has proven vital to his role as CEO of Hastings Deering, especially as he and the leadership team work to overcome the negative repercussions that have surfaced as a result of recent industry-based fluctuations.

“A large part of our business supports mining in Australia, and while we’ve experienced more than a decade of sustained growth within that industry, the recent global slowdown has been quite dramatic,” Mehmet explained.

Navigating this industry-wide decline has not been done without casualties: Hastings Deering has experienced two workforce reductions in just 18 months, and an estimated 12,000 jobs have been lost throughout Queensland overall.

According to Mehmet, Hastings Deering relied on the company’s core values to help throughout this time, remaining transparent and preserving integrity through honest and open communication with team members.

“We continue to explain what is going on to our staff – whether we like it or not – and what impact it has on our organization and the individuals we employ. There are no surprises.”

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