In its first order from Unitrans and MAKRO SOUTH AFRICA, Toyota Forklift, part of Eqstra Industrial Equipment (EIE), was selected as the sole supplier of the material handling equipment to the new MAKRO distribution centre in Cato Ridge, KwaZulu-Natal. The centre handles the inbound and outbound stock for MAKRO stores nationwide.

The order of forty units comprised of ten BT RRE250 Reach Trucks, twenty BT LSE200 power pallet trucks and ten Toyota 8FBN25 counterbalanced electric forklifts with single-double pallet handler attachments fitted on them. The BT RRE250 Reach Trucks have a lift height of 13 m, making this order also the largest number of trucks with this reach to be supplied by Toyota Forklift to one facility.

The contract covered the outright purchase of the machines, as well as a service level agreement.
An onsite based technician will provide comprehensive maintenance and servicing of the machines. Unitrans manages the 70 000 m2 state-of-the-art distribution centre for MAKRO, the largest of its kind in the KwaZulu-Natal midlands region of South Africa.

“This order highlights the benefits of Toyota Forklift’s commitment to forming partnerships for life with our clients, as we were recommended by our existing clients, Massbuild and Massdiscounters, sister companies of MAKRO and divisions of the Walmart Group,” says Steve Hatzipanis. “In the award of the contract to Toyota Forklift, such positive client endorsement was underpinned by our unrivalled product and extensive aftermarket support infrastructure.”

Besides their many other performance benefits, all BT and Toyota Forklift units supplied are equipped with the unique I-Site fleet management system, which includes the electronic pre-operational checklist function  .  An exclusive blend of wireless technology and ongoing support, Toyota I_Site makes the management of the fleet that much easier, providing the ability to measure and improve truck efficiencies.

Powered by energy efficient AC motors, the BT RRE250 Reach Trucks offer an intelligent man-machine interface for enhanced visibility, acceleration and lift control, all of which are simple to programme.
For high lift operations, the truck features a unique tilting cab, which reduces driver strain whilst offering safer and more accurate load handling.

The LSE200 battery powered pallet truck offers the highest levels of comfort and safety thanks to its stand-in’ design, which offers full protection for the operator. It is ideal for loading/unloading applications and those demanding long travel distances, such as cross-docking. Its load capacity is
2000 kg.

The zero emissions, environmentally-friendly Toyota Forklift 8FBN25 trucks offer improved energy efficiency and easy battery replacement for longer operation times. The ergonomic design features outstanding comfort and visibility from the wider opening for operator entry/exit, to a low profile
front cowl. The trucks are water resistant for “all weather” use.

Toyota Forklift’s award winning range of Toyota and BT branded forklift trucks and warehousing equipment covers applications from loading to horizontal transport, stacking and order picking, all supported by high-quality aftermarket services and ancillary products such as batteries and chargers
for forklifts. The range is distinguished by innovative technologies, which have set a benchmark in the market for improved productivity and safety.


Left to Right:
Steve Hatzipanis (Toyota Forklift), Moon Pillay (Makro), Bruno Dos Santos (Unitrans), Massimo Dragoni (Unitrans), Dean Bauer (Makro), Ryan Hosking (Toyota Forklift), Steve Curry (Toyota Forklift)

Note to Editors

Eqstra Industrial Equipment (“EIE”) provides distribution, leasing, rental and value-added services for industrial, materials handling and agricultural equipment in South Africa, various other African countries, the UK and Ireland. EIE has exclusive distribution agreements with best-in-class brands and operates from 4 branches, 10 depots and a comprehensive dealership network in Southern Africa, with representation in Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Malawi, Madagascar, Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The UK industrial equipment business, Impact Handling is the exclusive distributor for Cat Lift Trucks in the UK and Ireland. EIE forms part of the EQSTRA Holdings Limited Group, which is listed on the Johannesburg stock exchange.

For further information and enquiries on Toyota Forklift products and services please contact:

Steve Hatzipanis
Key Accounts Manager
+27 (0)11 571 0200
+27 (0)83 377 9333

Stephen Curry
Pietermaritzburg & Newcastle
Branch Manager
+27 (0)33 386 3373
+27 (0)82 8211 149