News story

Manitex buys Italian firm, reports higher sales

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 ( #642 ) - Bridgeview, IL, United States
Vella's products service a niche between the markets for forklifts and mobile cranes.
Vella's products service a niche between the markets for forklifts and mobile cranes.
Manitex International Inc has agreed in principle to acquire mobile industrial crane manufacturer Valla SpA of Calendasco, Italy. Valla reported 2012 sales of USD7.5 million and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation of USD700,000 for its line of precision pick-and-carry cranes with lifting capacities from 2.5-90 T. Valla was founded in 1945 and positions its line in a niche between the markets for forklifts and mobile cranes. Manitex disclosed the agreement with Valla last week. Terms were withheld, but the parties expect to complete the transaction quickly. Manitex envisions the Valla line complementing its niche crane offerings and extending its product portfolio. In the financial report for the second quarter ended 30 September, Manitex says it recorded profit of USD2.6 million on sales of USD57.5 million. The company had a profit of USD2.5 million on sales of USD53.4 million in the prior year's comparable quarter. "Despite a very slow overall economic environment, we posted another solid quarter of growth," says David Langevin, chairman and chief executive officer of Bridgeview-based Manitex. Langevin credits the higher sales primarily to boom truck cranes, up 19%, and equipment distribution, up 34%, and a USD2.1 million contribution from its USD14 million acquisition of mobile tank maker Sabre Manufacturing LLC of Knox, Indiana on 19 August. "These increases were partially offset by lower revenues from materials handling equipment," Langevin reports. The Manitex Liftking UTC subsidiary in Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada makes materials handling equipment including Noble straight-mast rough-terrain forklifts, Lowry high-capacity cushion-tyred forklifts, Schaeff electric indoor forklifts, specialised carriers, heavy materials handling transporters and steel mill equipment. The backlog at 30 September was USD96.7 million, "providing some helpful visibility into the next few quarters", says Andrew Rooke, president and chief operating officer.