Rooted in local Miyazaki, Yano Industry supplies quality crushed stone for roads and concrete, as well as track ballast and many other products. HCM's business relationship with Yano Industry dates back to when there was no HCM sales office in Miyazaki Prefecture, only a rented office in part of an automobile company building. "Back then, gravel was collected from rivers and land. The mainstream hydraulic excavators of other manufacturers were still in the 0.3 m³ class. While these were also prone to breakdowns, HCM's 0.7 m³ class was very reliable," says Chairman and Representative Director Hisaya Yano.
Eventually, during the period of the high economic growth, the scale of Yano Industry's business soared, leading to the serial opening of large quarry plants in the Hyuga and Tano districts. In 1987, when the construction of the Higashi-Kyushu Expressway moved into high gear, the UH35 was introduced to the Hyuga Quarry Plant to cater to the increase in production.
"Even for minor problems, an engineer would come right away and deal with it. HCM was all about its people. I remember the names of all of the service staff members at the Miyazaki Office," President and Representative Director Toshiya Yano reminisces. "When we said that the hydraulic oil tank wasn't working well, an engineer brought a designer right away and made a custom stainless steel tank. HCM listens to our needs and reflects them into products, coming up with something that can be called Yano Industry-specialized models. I was impressed with their supportive competence as a manufacturer." Not only did the UH35 cater to the needs on site, it was also the basis of our partnership with HCM, sharing information with Yano Industry and working together on product development in order to further evolve large hydraulic excavators.
After establishing itself as the cornerstone of the Hyuga Quarry Plant, the UH35 retired after 21 years of operation when the EX1200 was introduced in 2008. Repainted to honor its stature, the UH35 is currently exhibited at the front entrance of the Hyuga Quarry Plant. "When I look at this machine, the toils of the time and other memories come back. If we weren't attached to it, we wouldn't be showcasing it," recalls President Yano.
Hyuga Quarry Plant
"Nowadays, there are fewer people with passion in HCM." Chairman Yano opened the interview on a solemn note. In those days, Mr. Yano recalls that the construction machinery at both Hyuga and Tano Plants were mostly orange. Today, along with the transition from loading with loading excavators to using wheel loaders, a total of 12 HCM vehicles, including two EX1200 loading excavators, are operating at Yano Industry. "Indeed, HCM's machinery is excellent. But what was even more exceptional was the staff's passion and legwork. Should a problem occur, I felt the spirit of corporate oneness was there to deal with it," says Chairman Yano.
Chairman Hisaya Yano
President Yano also recalls the unforgettable memories of the past when HCM staff would come in day and night, because they rented a residence near the Chairman's home. He added "I've often said that you have to buy from HCM because their staff go to such lengths for their customers." The Chairman of Yano Industries these days feels a bit lonely, compared to the days when HCM staff used to visit. "The HCM staff back then would often come to the site even after we bought their machines, bringing lots of souvenirs-especially industry information. They also did not hold back any information when selling their products. They not only mentioned the good, but also were open about possible issues and weaknesses. Perhaps the split-up into manufacturing and sales caused this as we now have less visits by HCM's plant engineers and even if they do visit, the communication is mostly limited to business-like talks. I'm wondering if the corporate climate has changed," says Chairman Yano.
Mr. Yano holds the cost-efficiency of the ZX350H and ZH200-6 introduced in 2013 and 2018 in high regard. Yano Industry meticulously calculates costs for each machine with respect to its depreciation, repair, and fuel, and records up to each yen and sen (1/100 yen). "We ensure strict self-management so that we don't say anything that lacks proof to manufacturers. I want HCM to know that users are critically monitoring their machinery," says Mr. Yano. Behind the forthright opinion, we can feel how deeply Yano Industry cares about each machine they purchase.
President Toshiya Yano
EX1200, successor of the UH35
ZH200-6 operating at Hyuga Quarry Plant
The volume of crushed stone shipped from Miyazaki Prefecture is decreasing compared to its peak in the 1990s. The key factor for this trend is the society's increased demand for a resource recycling plus a significant reduction of public construction projects. Predicting this, Yano Industry founded the Miyazaki Saisei Shizai Corporation in 1999 in order to produce and sell recycled crushed stone. Also in 2013, Yano Industry established a solar power plant in Kunitomi-cho, Higashi-morokata-gun and Miyazaki Prefectures as a joint venture with a company that owns one of the world's largest solar photovoltaic cell factories. This solar power plant is steadily operating along with the power plant in Hyuga, which was established in 2015.
Among the business lines, Yano Industry have started up to respond today's needs, which surprisingly included a daycare facility that started in 2019. The Midorinooka Daycare Center, named and established by Chairman Yano to "create a company where childrearing employees can also work at ease," is annexed to the head office as a daycare facility for both the employees' children and children in the community. To start up this project, they worked on it from scratch with childcare professionals. President Yano says, "The childcare professionals suggested that we make the windows in the corridors and doors larger so that all staff, including caretakers outside of the nursing rooms, can check on the children. This is something we wouldn't have thought up ourselves." The President also mentions that interactions with people in completely different industries and fields are also giving their employees great stimuli in their day to day work.
Recently, Yano Industry is seeing more employees who left the company returning. "Running a company boils down to cultivating people and the daycare service is part of that mission. There are perhaps good things they notice about the company after gone elsewhere. Employees work very hard when they return, and we make sure we take care of them. HCM should also work hard on cultivating people," says Chairman Yano. With the four-lane expansion of the Higashi-Kyushu Expressway well underway, Yano Industry is expecting increased business operations while we also can't take our eyes off how their new initiatives will blossom in the near future.
Midorinooka Daycare Center, opened in October 2019
Many female staff members work at Yano Industry
Chairman Yano always tells the employees to "enjoy their work." "Any kind of job needs some kind of play," he says. A factory park was created on the premise of the head office and plant as an embodiment of his thoughts. This park is also widely available for local residents. The park is planted with trees that bloom colorful flowers in each season and offers resting spaces with arbors and a wisteria trellis. There is also space for sports, like a softball ground and a gateball park which are bustling with people of all ages on a daily basis. Taking advantage of its grand, impressive natural setting, the Hyuga Quarry Plant is sometimes used for popular TV dramas and major companies' commercials and advertisements. The connection with the community and society beyond business also motivates its employees.
|Engine rated power (PS/rpm)||540/1,800|
|Feature||UH35 was designed as successor of UH30. It was upgraded in order to match with 30-50 ton dump truck. As an energy saving technology, this model adopted "relief-oil minimizing system", "Auto-idling system", and "closed loop swing circuit". Closed loop swing circuit absorbs swing inertial energy and reduces the fuel consumption.|
The UH35 is on display in front of the entrance of the Hyuga Quarry Plant after its 21 years of operation.
|■Business:||Production and sale of crushed stone products (for concrete, asphalt, pavement, track ballast, rubble stone for civil engineering, gabion stone, riprap for ports, Rock-One agricultural soil, playing field soil (Misago), finely-crushed lime with iron oxide, and soil cement|
|■Representative:||Chairman Hisaya Yano
President Toshiya Yano
|■Established:||May 1, 1962|
|■Address:||3952-3 Kiwaki, Kunitomi-cho, Higashi-morokata-gun, Miyazaki Prefecture|