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Will Linde Pull out of big trucks next year or the year after
With the big truck market getting more competitive with the entry of another three new manufactures next year , Heli , Sany from China and OTO from Italy will linde pull out of this market to concentrate on smaller trucks under 9,000 kg and warehouse equipment. The running cost of a large place like Merthyr Tydfil will be putting a strain on KION groups resources and they will not be able to be competitive on price and must be able to make a profit so will Linde just pull out of big trucks
  • Posted 20 Dec 2012 09:23 PM
Total replies: 59. Showing items 1 - 20 of 59 results.
It's a pure speculation from my side, but I don't presume it will happen soon, or in next 3-5 years.

1. Linde heavy truck line has a group of stabile users, who of course can change the supplier but they will rather go towards the other european product. According to my knowledge, the Linde users very rarely go to chineese products and this is their alternative now.

2. Linde already closed Basingstoke and I don't think that they will decide to move away the whole production from UK. This is the big market, it would be a bad marketing, and it can have the influence on US market.

3. There are still some machines manufactured in Merthyr Tydfil which have pretty good position. S-series for example.

4. Linde invested recently a big amount of money in the developement of the heavy machines. I think they will try to get some ROI.

To reassume - I think the startegy will be first to survive the crisis with the smallest possible cost. But the heavy line will stay.
Of course the plant may be reduced and overprofiled, but as I've written above, Linde, IMHO, will keep the ability to produce big machines.

I know your deepest secret fear...
  • Posted 21 Dec 2012 02:39 AM
Hi Karait

The points you make are fair but there still is going to be a large change in the market for heavy forklifts globally the market including container handling forklifts and reach stacker over 18,000 kg is around 3,000 units. In this market Linde is classed as a premium manufacturer , with a higher end price with the new companies entering the market mainly from China Sany , heli and european market Newcomer OTO backed by a large steel company these trucks will enter at a more value price end of the market. This will not only have a effect on Linde but also koneCranes SVE Truck CVS and others in the same area. Kone cranes will be in some way protected by having other products to offer such as cranes but the others will have problems. NACCO will be in a way protected by their strong sales in the US. Cargotec has seen this all ready and moved a lot of production to Poland to be more competitive Linde being based in the UK is now un competitive on price and can only compete with trucks built at their plant in China. These truck will be the same quality as other manufactures and customers won't class them as a premium product. Linde has a image to keep with there smaller end of equipment that is also classed as a premium product so won't want this image down grading. Also the only way Linde can keep the Uk operation going is to make loses on this Goldman Sachs and KKR who own KION have said there is no more capital to be injected and have made quite a large loss on the sale all ready this year. They are looking to find a buyer for KION this year and can't have a loss making division in the group. Goldman and KKR sold 75% of Linde hydraulic business this is were all the tech to the Chinese these are not just going to let Linde have this they are going to sell this in the open market. Linde have seen how junghienrich closed there big truck operation down in 2000 Boss Trucks and have grown as a warehouse manufacture with a counter balance range up to 9,000kg.

I'm sure if this was a decision being made by Linde that they would keep it going but it is not its a decision being made by Goldman and KKR and they want to stop the losses so it will go
Goldman and KKR know they will never make any money now on KION and want to just sell and get out but first they can't have any loss making divisions and that is why Linde heavy trucks will go. Linde invested over 20 mill us dollars in there big truck range and are loosing money in this field so they will never get a ROI on this project they will have to right this Off. To now compete in this area you are going to have to show customers a real benefit of your equipment this goes for all manufactures including Cargotec. The new companies coming in will attract customers on price and as their equipment is the same as what is on offer how can Linde , Cargotec , Konecranes and the others charge a higher price for effectively
the same equipment

Kion are to allow Weichai Power Co. Ltd. to grow there stake to 33% and are looking to IPO next year this will have a massive impact on the heavy truck division and will see the end of Linde production in the UK
  • Posted 21 Dec 2012 07:41 AM
  • • Modified 21 Dec 2012 08:30 PM by poster
I agree that the Chinese manufacturers will be a force in the future but it will be a while before they can break into the market in the US. They've been trying for at least ten years and have next to no market presence in the smaller truck segment.
Big trucks are a totally different market than the typical Class IV or Class V vanilla spec'ed truck. Most end users of bigger trucks of 20,000# capacity and up are much more concerned with quality, reliability and experience than a company that buys a 5000# cushion truck.

  • Posted 21 Dec 2012 10:53 PM
Hi duodeluxe do you think like what happened with the Japanese manufactures when they start to manufacture in the US they will get better market share. to be a totally dominate manufacture like the japanese you have to manufacture in the US
  • Posted 22 Dec 2012 04:11 AM
Daveilift, do you think Kone Cranes will have any interest to buy Linde Heavy Trucks?
  • Posted 31 Dec 2012 08:02 AM
Thats a very interesting point , Kone Cranes have a very good range of equipment over 20,000kg and the Linde 10,000kg - 18,000kg is also very good all tho in my opinion the 10,000kg is a bit heavy ,Also the Linde Empty container handling truck is very good So yes there is a very good business there to buy if you know what you want out of it. The problem i can see is the costings are quite high here in the UK and the benefits of these high cost don't relate back to the customer in over all savings.

Linde Heavy Lift are from what i know loosing money and KION have told Linde to stop lose making operations to prepare for a sale this is why Bari went in Italy last year. It will all depend on how much Linde would want for a lose making company and how much some one would be willing to pay , But on that note i think yes Kone Cranes might be interested but also new Italin company OTO or even one of the Korean manufactures. I can't see Taylor in the US wanting it but form a company who could tie up the Linde sales network in Europe could benefit.

You might say looking at this then why would Linde want to sell but in all honesty i don't think Linde would this would be a KION decision not Linde
  • Posted 31 Dec 2012 09:35 PM
  • • Modified 31 Dec 2012 09:54 PM by poster
Davelift, Relative to the share of market of the Japanese in the US I offer these comments. In 1980, I was part of group to determine what market presence of the each Japanese lift truck company that was importing to the US market - there activity was not included in the ITA numbers for North America (meaning US & Canada at that time). Collectively, we determined that in the 2 - 9000# (cushion - press on solids and pneumatic tire range, their share was total of 34% with Nissan and Toyota near the top and Mitsubishi (a relatively newcomer to the US at that time) at the bottom. During this time period companies like Allis-Chalmers, Clark, Cat (with their allocation programs) were starting to really struggle and their top dealers started to take on a second line. These dealer discovered these units from Japan were very reliable and high quality and showed very low cost maintenance/repair cost in their rental fleets by comparison to there primary brand, plus they were cheaper and "sales people" could once again make nice sales commissions - a real WIN, WIN, WIN, WIN situation. I joined one of the companies in Houston in 1984 - they made me a deal "I couldn't refuse". Times were fun again and lots of hard work, then along came the Anti-Dumping suit in 1987 (as I recall Toyota penalty was in the neighborhood of 10% and others were approaching 50%. The Japanese companies started assembly & light manufacturing operations in the US in 1988/89 - then some intensified US manufacturing. While this was going on companies like Allis-Chalmers, that once employed 1100 people in US & Canada, died the death of a ragged doll, White Mobilift disappeared, Clark was in a downward spiral and Cat had issues. The Japanese presence became stronger and stronger as they rapidly aligned them selves with even more top flight dealers and became members of the ITA in 1983/84 time period. One might call this period a Perfect Storm for gaining market share presence in North America.

"Have An Exceptional Day!"
  • Posted 31 Dec 2012 09:39 PM
Thats quite interesting. i think any company wanting to do well in the US has to have a manufacturing facility there. Reports out of China are that wages are having to go up and then when you add shipping cost's and the higher cost of steel then the lower cost of China might not be such a advantage in five to ten years time. What i think you will see is more Chines companies like Sany having US assembly plants and they might look at strengthening there service network to really compete. To be competitive in a market you need a presence there.
  • Posted 31 Dec 2012 09:52 PM
100% truth.

It applies to european market too.
Toyota started to produce the trucks in France, purchased BT and generally is very present in Europe.
Nacco manufactures the trucks in Ireland and Italy and they are present here too.

I am not sure if chinese manufacturers will be able to go this way.

The advantages they have are based on pricing policy only.
These prices are the result of low labour costs and taxes.
It's even confirmed, that chinese government subsidizes the domestic manufacturers when they produce for outer markets.

All these issues will be not actual, when they start the production in Europe.

The chinese companies have capital (really big one) and perhaps they will purchase some high technology.
But this is a bit too little.
Chinese advantages remain valid till the production stays in China.

I know your deepest secret fear...
  • Posted 31 Dec 2012 10:18 PM
Totally agree that market presence (facility & field personnel) is important but the most important is after sale support parts, technical and training. My experience is that most Chinese companies want to sell first and let support follow - that don't work - Heli seems to have taken a different approach. If you follow the history of the Japanese successes they developed product support systems to help achieve their rapid growth. When I joined Mitsubishi in 1984 their sales were in the mid three digits but they committed to support and sales rose rapidly to over 10 fold in a relatively short period - then they joined up with Cat to take a quantum leap it to the next level with an expanded dealer network adn factory support programs/services. Nissan had been established in Mayfield, Kentucky and Ted Jackson headed up that group. They were the #1 Japanese seller in the US and in the mid 1980's Toyota restructured and rose rapidly and became the #1 selling Japanese brand and kept growing. I worked with Dr. Basu (former Toyota top guy) at A-C and he & others from A-C joined Toyota during that time period - I even introduced Shankar to a great American "belly buster" called "White Castle" hamburger [url removed] slider - he has never forgiven me for that gastronomical attack.
  • Posted 31 Dec 2012 10:32 PM
I think the Chinese policy of price competitiveness will change and service and technology will take over. pricing in China at the moment might be low but this advantage will disapeer over time and when you add cost's like shipping then alternatives will appear. In the future the companies that will dominate the market will be the ones that can offer a clear benefit to the customer and service. You might have the best designed truck in the world at the lowest possible price but if there is no service back up it's no good.

In the port equipment area ZMPC became number one by offering top quality equipment at a good price with service back up. Any company wanting to do well in our industry must have these three points Value you for money, Quality, and service back up

The company that can bring these to the table will do well
  • Posted 31 Dec 2012 10:56 PM
  • • Modified 31 Dec 2012 11:00 PM by poster
I'm the front line supporter of aftersales quality as marketing issue. This is my profession anyway.

Concerning the topic, it may take years before Chinese will be able to built and estabilish the high quality aftersales support.

Even, when (if?) they purchase Linde Heavy Trucks Division, they won't take over the actual service network, which stays by the Linde dealers and usually is the part of their bussiness.

When we look at Koreans - Dossan is pretty strong in heavy trucks, the product is reliable and the prices are reasonable.
But they have problems with european market because of their lack of engagement here. They have some facility in Belgium but it's just a warehouse. The dealer network is rather weak (excluding UK, I presume), the technical and spares support is far from perfect.

As far as I know Doosan is aware of their aftersales weakness but IMHO this is the mentality problem. They still think - "sell and worry later", which is the basic attitude of majority of asian producers (excluding Japanese).
Remembering, that Doosan (Daewoo) sales trucks in Europe for over 25 years and still can't cross the line, I don't expect, that Chinese, will succeed here
Oops, sorry - Doosan few years ago purchased some micro factory, ATL in Germany, which makes some warehouse stuff.

Generally I don't expect, that Chinese, will succeed here.
Building the aftersales is not only the matter of the gang of servicemen cruising around.
It's the matter of culture and you shape it for years.

I know your deepest secret fear...
  • Posted 1 Jan 2013 12:03 AM
  • Brussels, Belgium
in antwerp there are few linde big trucks just 1 reach stacker compete with the established existing dealers become difficult in these hard sold by TVH they are not willing to buy market share ,they have a strict sales policy they not deviate from it. TVH has 1 off the better service network of belguim and good technical support for numoures brands
  • Posted 3 Jan 2013 02:23 PM
TVH are quite strong in aftersales
  • Posted 4 Jan 2013 04:10 AM
  • • Modified 4 Jan 2013 04:14 AM by poster
There are regions where LINDE is quite strong. perhaps it will make sense to concentrate of those areas and just offer RS and ECH.. There is no reason to have the whole range from 10 to 52 tonnes. It only brings notional value. In summary i HOPE they stay in the market.
  • Posted 19 Jan 2013 03:41 PM
  • bilko
  • south wales, United Kingdom
hey davteilift, big announcement nexweek at lhtd merthyr what,s your forecast..?
  • Posted 27 Jan 2013 07:28 PM
Kone Cranes to take over container handling side , Hope they keep Merthyr going. Its a good facility but just hope the numbers add up to keep it going.
  • Posted 27 Jan 2013 08:06 PM
  • • Modified 27 Jan 2013 08:08 PM by poster
How come its workable?? if Kone is going to takeover then why merthyr will remain open??? its going to be complicated
  • Posted 27 Jan 2013 08:24 PM
  • • Modified 27 Jan 2013 08:24 PM by poster
Thats the point it is all down to the numbers and if Linde move some other production to Merthyr. we will know this week it might be don't read this post
  • Posted 27 Jan 2013 08:35 PM
  • • Modified 27 Jan 2013 08:40 PM by poster
Daveilift you seem to know a lot about Linde htd and Kion do you work for either of them and are using this to put things out before Linde and Kion do , If not would you take over Merthyr if Linde was to close it
  • Posted 28 Jan 2013 04:53 AM
Total replies: 59. Showing items 1 - 20 of 59 results.

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