Rogers Brothers Trailers

Rogers Brothers is a manufacturer of high capacity trailers that are used in the mining industry. The company, located in Erie County, has been in operation since 1905 and conducted its first export sale around 1910 to South Africa. Since that time, the company has expanded both domestically and internationally.

The company had worked with the Gannon University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) during the early 2000s. Then, in early 2009, the U.S. Commercial Service office in Pittsburgh put Rogers in touch with the Saint Francis University SBDC, and more specifically its Center for Global Competitiveness. This was in relation to the international trade shows that the Center did in various parts of the world targeting the mining sector.

After the Saint Francis Center met and worked with the company, Rogers Brothers decided to have the Center represent them at the Expomin Mining Show in Arequipa, Peru in the fall of 2009. The show generated a number of leads for the company, one of which was very interested in using the trailers manufactured by Rogers in their mines.

As follow-up to this lead, the SBDC along with the U.S. Commercial Service conducted due diligence to learn more about this particular lead. Once this was concluded, the lead placed a $500,000 order with Rogers Brothers for one trailer. The order was successfully completed and shipped to Peru to Southern Peru Copper Company.

The initial order was not the end of the business relationship with the representative or with Southern Peru Copper. In May 2015, the SBDC had the privilege of serving on an international trade panel at a U.S. Commercial Service event in Erie. Among those serving on the panel was Mark Kulyk of Rogers Brothers. In his comments, he talked about how their relationship with Peru had grown over the years. That initial order had led to export sales to Southern Peru Copper of just under $1.74 million. Additionally, Rogers was expecting another order in the near future.

The company has received spin-off export business from this as well. Recent total export sales total in excess of $3.1 million. Sales to Chile are just over $815,000 of this amount while sales to Africa and Canada are over $270,000 and just under $275,000 respectively. Mr. Kulyk commented that the sales to Africa and Canada are directly related to their Peru sales.

Since 2009, Rogers Brothers has been represented by the Saint Francis SBDC at a number of different trade shows. All of these shows were able to generate a number of leads for the company, and the company is hopeful that a number of these will bear fruit for them as well.