MD Power: Building on the Perkins legacy in Brazil.

MD Power, the Perkins distributor for Brazil, was founded in 2006. But, the new company’s business manager, Alfredo Sarmento, brought more than 19 years of Perkins experience to the new venture. That experience was the inspiration for a somewhat unusual business plan for the start-up.



“Perkins has always enjoyed a strong reputation for customer support,” Alfredo explained. “So, instead of offering engines immediately, we focused our efforts on building a strong parts and service support base for the dealers servicing the engines already in the field.

“From a short-term business perspective, it was an easily identified existing market to support the launch of the new company. And, in the longer run it allowed us to develop the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and end-user relationships we would need to support engine sales.”

The strategy was a success. MD Power sold more than 2,000 Perkins engines last year. The company’s parts and service sales and their training programmes have all enjoyed robust growth as well.

MD Power in the Perkins Distributor Excellence Programme

From locations in São Paulo, Araçariguama and Curitiba the company manages, trains and supports a vast network of dealers covering virtually every major industry in Brazil. Supported by Perkins’ Distributor Excellence Programme, which is delivering impressive results for both businesses, MD Power focuses their engine sales and support on four major sectors: industrial; agriculture; electric power generation; and construction.

“Today, we are working primarily with Perkins® 1100 and 2000 Series engines,” Alfredo said. “Those cover large segments of our present industries. We are also in the process of adding 400 Series Industrial Open Power Units (IOPUs) to the product line to fill a need for smaller engines in some important agricultural and industrial segments.”

Locally produced engines

Most of the Perkins 1100 Series engines MD Power supplies are built in the Perkins plant in Curitiba. Opened in 2003, the Curitiba plant produces both electronic and mechanical engines, largely for use by OEMs in the Brazilian and Latin American territories.

“Local production is very important for a number of reasons,” Alfredo noted. “Obviously, having the plant here in Brazil means the jobs and economic benefits flow into the Brazilian economy.

“But, since a number of important OEMs are located in the south of Brazil, it also means we can often deliver an engine quicker than our competitors because we have a facility very close to the Curitiba plant. That can be a significant advantage, especially for a new customer or an existing customer who needs and engine quickly for some reason.”

Locally stocked parts

Curitiba also hosts a Perkins Regional Logistics Centre which stocks thousands of genuine Perkins parts that can be delivered rapidly. Everything from fuel and oil filters to major engine components and rebuild kits are in-stock there.

“One reason we’ve been successful with OEMs is the confidence they have in the quality, performance and durability of Perkins engines,” Alfredo added. “By encouraging them to use only genuine Perkins parts on their engines, and assuring that those parts will be available when they need them, we reinforce that confidence with every transaction.”

In addition to parts, MD Power offers a wide range of support services through its dealer network. The offerings include Perkins® Hypercare customised service plans, preventive maintenance, repairs, fluid sampling and analysis, and even overhauls and replacement engines.

Training dedicated technicians

Servicing and maintaining modern diesel engines requires technicians with specialised skills. MD Power meets this challenge with training programmes for dealer network technicians, OEM personnel and even sophisticated end-users. Their Araçariguama facility is equipped with special engine-specific tools, a technical library and up-to-date software to provide high quality training for professional technicians.

Brazil is a very large and geographically diverse country, which means technicians from MD Power’s dealer network often have to overcome unusual obstacles to keep a customer’s engine running.

Thick bush floods and jaguars

In a recent case, a technician was dispatched to a customer emergency in the State of Mato Grosso in west-central Brazil. Mato Grosso means ‘thick bush’ which in this case was quite descriptive. There was also a flood in progress.

When the road eventually became impassible, the customer used a tractor to take the technician to the equipment in need of repair. They were accompanied by a number of dogs who came along to alert the travellers to the presence of Jaguars and other wild animals on the route.

Arriving safely, the technician was able to repair the engine and return the equipment to service. Everyone involved returned safely and with a great story to tell. All of this, by the way, happened on a Sunday.

An innovative solution

Another technician drove a long distance to reach an emergency hospital using a Perkins powered generator with a failed Electronic Control Module (ECM). Once there he found that the ECM had been damaged by magnetic interference from another generator operating in close proximity.

He was able to replace the ECM, but the interference kept it from accepting the software parametrisation required to put the engine back in service. The ECM could not be programmed from his laptop while both were in the room.

The other generator was supplying critical power to the hospital and could not be shut down.

With the aid of remote support from MD Power, the technician was able to improvise a solution, complete the parametrisation remotely and return the generator to service and the hospital to full operation.

Growing the Perkins legacy

“These are just two of many examples I could cite,” Alfredo said. “With Perkins engines powering off-road equipment often in remote locations they aren’t even that unusual. They overcome the challenges because they are dedicated professionals with a Perkins legacy spanning nearly a century to uphold.

“Quality products, supported by efforts like these, have built Perkins international reputation for quality, reliability and, above all, customer service. We are all proud to be part of that.”


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