Pennsylvania business brings together farm technology and service
By KRISTY FOSTER
GROVE CITY, Pa. — A Pennsylvania tractor and implement dealer may have only been at the location for a year but it brings a lot of history and dedication to technology.
Lamb and Webster began in 1960 with its first location in Springville, N.Y., then it built its North Java, N.Y. location in 1986 and, in 2002, opened the Woodhull, N.Y. site.
History. It was started by Lloyd Lamb and Austin Webster.
Now there are four partners in the dealership, Lloyd Lamb Jr., Ron Goodrich, Tom Lamb and Bob Lefrancois.
They employ 85 people currently and their intention is to grow the location to include 25 additional employees.
The dealership carries a multitude of brands including lines from Case IH, Claas, Kuhn, H&S, Kioti tractors, Club Cadet, Knight, Kubota, New Holland and Honda.
Lamb and Webster is a full service dealer, carrying everything from walk-behind lawnmowers to combines and everything in between. They pride themselves in servicing both grain and dairy customers with their long list of available equipment.
Dealership hours. The Grove City location is open from 7:30 a.m.- 5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday and from 7:30 p.m.- 1 p.m. on Saturday. The dealership also offers flexible hours if needed.
Lamb and Webster is also proud of its parts department. They stock more parts than most dealers and are constantly upgrading the inventory. In addition, they have the ability to move parts from store to store. If a customer orders parts, they are delivered by 8 a.m. the next day.
Service doesn’t close. In addition, the service department is also working to be a farmer’s best friend. Lamb and Webster has 24 hours a day, seven days a week service available. A person can be reached on all holidays at all times of the day to help a farmer with a piece of equipment.
“All it takes is a call,” said Bob Lefrancois, vice president of sales and marketing.
The parts staff has a combined total of 45 years of service.
In addition to be sales staff, the employees are also trained to be consultants for farmers so they can help solve problems.
Sales. The sales staff has a combined total of 40 years with a total of 14 salesman and two out of the Grove City store. The sales staff has the latest communication technology tools in their vehicles.
“They can communicate from the field and do many things right from the farm they couldn’t do in the past. We are trying to move more toward that goal,” Lefrancois said.
Financing. Lamb and Webster offers a full range of financing for every product they sell. They also develop custom financing plans for farmers. The main source of financing is CNH Capital (part of Case New Holland company) even through the credit crunch.
In addition, Lamb and Webster does everything it can to ensure the buyer has everything they could need, including extended warranties and insurance on the equipment they are purchasing.
“We are here for the whole process from start to finish,” Lefrancois said.
Precision farming. One area growing in the equipment sector is precision farming. This includes autosteering for tractors and implements. There are six towers constructed by the company in New York and plans are under way for construction in the area the Grove City store handles.
Lefrancois said there is a growing demand for the tools. He added the benefits are worth the investment in the system because of the cost savings.
“It saves fuel and wear and tear of the equipment as well as can cut the cost of input like seeds and chemicals,” he said.
Less fatigue. In addition, there is less fatigue on the farmer because the machine is doing work such as mapping the field, determining yields and the monitoring that he or she may have done in the past. This can mean more acreage with less labor in the end.
“They can stay in the tractor a lot longer and are less tired when they do get out,” Lefrancois said.
Lefrancois said one of the goals of Lamb and Webster is to keep up with technology and the state-of-the-art equipment.
“We strive to keep up on the most innovative products and have the staff trained and available to take care of the customers needs,” he said.
Community involvement. In addition, Lamb and Webster prides itself on being involved in the agriculture community. They travel to the Butler Farm Show, Lawrence County Fair, Crawford County Fair, Big Knob and Stoneboro grange fairs. This year, they are adding Jefferson County Fair to the mix.
The business also supports 4-H and the FFA chapters through the purchase of livestock at the fairs.
Employees also attend community meetings and talk about the agriculture community and issues in it.