CAT and Trimble to strengthen mining technology collaboration

Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT), the world's No.1 heavy machinery maker, and software developer Trimble said Friday they are extending their collaboration to bring mining customers improved operational decision-making capabilities.

The agreement falls within the framework of an already established relationship between the companies aimed to transform the way mines manage their business, California-based Trimble said in a statement.

Since mining equipment sales have yet to pick up, CAT has been focused on developing ways to improve current equipment performance.

As part of the deal, CAT is expected to become the primary sales, marketing, distribution and support channel for Trimble’s Connected Mine platform. Further, CAT MineStar, a suite of integrated mine operations and mobile equipment management technologies, and Trimble’s Connected Mine, mine data visualization and management solutions, will be integrated and collaboratively developed.

Since mining equipment sales have yet to pick up, Caterpillar has been focused on developing ways to improve current equipment performance.

Together with increasing the presence of company representatives at mine sites, whose mission is to help operators make the most out of their acquisitions, CAT has been heavily investing in research and development of digital solutions, the firm’s President for Resource Industries, Denise Johnson, recently told MINING.com.

The goal, though seems counterintuitive, is to reduce the amount of mining equipment needed at operations. That means that during a downturn, such as the one that has wrecked the industry lately, CAT would continue to thrive in terms of sales beyond those related to equipment. The firm would sell the technology that supports and maximize returns and efficiency of mining operations.