By Errol Castens/NEMS Daily Journal
OXFORD – One minute Joey Holcomb is talking by phone to a supplier, the next putting farm equipment brochures on a rack, and the next deciding where new equipment should be displayed.
“I guess I signed up for this,” he jokes.
Holcomb is the general manager and a partner of Oxford Kubota, a new dealership that sells Kubota tractors, landscape equipment and utility vehicles along with Land Pride implements. The business also has a four-bay service shop and a full parts department.
Until he started working to get this business off the ground, Holcomb was the general manager at Chickasaw Equipment in Tupelo. One of the attractions of locating in Oxford, he said, was its unserved market.
“There hasn’t been a tractor dealer here in 40 or 50 years, and there are a lot of farms and ranches that surround Oxford and Lafayette County, and they all have to go somewhere else,” Holcomb said. “This area was not being covered, especially for Kubota. I have five counties here that I’m responsible for, and out of those, only Panola and Calhoun have tractor dealerships.”
Until his soft opening last week, when he sold his first mower to a Tupelo customer, Holcomb said, “If you needed a box blade, you couldn’t have bought one in this town.” The dealership will have an official opening in early May.
With its emphasis on tractors under 135 horsepower, the orange Japan-based tractor brand is a good fit for the market, he insisted.
“Kubota has really catered to cattle farmers/ranchers and the hobby farmers that have 10 acres that need to be BushHogged and that have driveways to maintain,” Holcomb said. “Deer hunters are fixing food plots, so they need a compact tractor that they can put on a small trailer and haul to the woods.”
By fall, Holcomb intends to open a farm and ranch supply store adjacent to his tractor dealership on Highway 30 East, just off Highway 7.
“It’ll be feed, seed, fertilizer, gates, posts, wire, gardening,” he said. “It’ll be a full line of Western wear and work boots.
“All that goes right along with tractors,” Holcomb said. “If you’ve got a farm, you need a tractor. If you’ve got animals, you’ve got to feed them. You’ve got to have fertilizer, fencing.”
For more information, call (662) 234-9558 or visit www.oxfordkubota.com.