A Hyster H190HD2 high-capacity forklift
For the first quarter ended on 31 March, Hyster-Yale Materials Handling Inc and Terex Corp's aerial work platform (AWP) segments reported sales gains while Manitowoc Co Inc's crane segment logged a decline.
Hyster-Yale sales grew 4.8% to USD676.0 million from USD644.9 million in 2013's first quarter. For the comparable periods, profit declined to USD22.1 million from USD24.6 million.
Hyster-Yale attributed the revenue increase to improved sales of higher-priced forklifts in all market segments, the favorable effect of unit price increases implemented in 2013, and an increase in fleet services and parts volume in the Americas.
Hyster-Yale's fewer unit shipments in Europe were more than offset by increases in unit shipments in the Americas and Asia-Pacific. Hyster-Yale shipped about 20,600 units in first quarter 2014 and 20,800 in first quarter 2013.
Unfavourable currency movements in first quarter 2014 compared with first quarter 2013 resulted from a weakening of the Brazilian real and the Australian dollar. The euro strengthening against the US dollar partially mitigated the unfavourable currency movements.
Compared with 2013, Hyster-Yale projects moderate growth in the global market for forklifts in the remainder of 2014.
"Strength in certain developed western markets is expected to be partially offset by some weakening in the developing markets," the company says. The majority of the increase is expected to come from the Americas, with smaller increases in Asia-Pacific unit shipments.
"Due to current political and economic uncertainties in Eastern Europe and new dealer transitions, an increase in 2014 European shipments appears less likely than had previously been anticipated," Hyster-Yale reports.
Alfred M Rankin Jr, chair, president and CEO, says Hyster-Yale has significant business volumes in eastern European countries and Russia in particular. He acknowledges the region's unsettled conditions, saying Russia's actions and internal discontent may threaten neighbouring countries with the turmoil slowing business transactions.
Rankin foresees moderate market growth in China although not comparable to the explosive gains in recent years. He reports a decline in demand in Australia.
H Mayfield Heights, Ohio-based Hyster-Yale, through its operating company Nacco Materials Handling Group, operates 21 facilities around the world, including sites for manufacturing forklifts and component parts.
Terex's aerial work platform (AWP) segment reports a 14.9% gain in sales to USD584.9 million for the first quarter from USD509.1 million for first quarter 2013.
"We remain encouraged by the performance of our AWP segment, which delivered excellent results in the first quarter," says Ronald M DeFeo, Terex chair and CEO. "We expect continued strength from our AWP segment."
The AWP segment designs, manufactures, services and markets aerial work platform equipment, telehandlers, light towers and bridge inspection equipment, principally under the Terex and Genie brand names.
Companywide for continuing operations, Westport, Connecticut-based Terex reports profit of USD32.6 million on sales of USD1.655 billion in the quarter against profit of USD25.1 million on sales of USD1.654 billion in first quarter 2013.
First quarter sales for the Manitowoc business segment for cranes and related products were USD466.7 million, compared with USD544.0 million in first quarter 2013.
The 14.2% decline in sales stemmed from delays in some customer-related projects and the segment's lower backlog at the start of production in 2014, Glen E Tellock, Manitowoc chair and CEO, says.
At 31 March, the crane segment backlog was USD842 million representing an increase of USD267 million, or 47% from 31 December. First quarter 2014 crane orders of USD733 million were 29% higher than first quarter 2013.
"We remain encouraged by opportunities for our crane segment as our exhibit at ConExpo was met with tremendous success," Tellock says. "The introduction of our patented variable position counterweight crawler crane technology drove order intake to its highest level since before the recession." The ConExpo-Con/Agg show was on 4-8 March in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The segment's product line includes lattice-boom, tower and mobile-telescopic cranes and boom trucks. Key brands include Manitowoc, Potain, Grove, National Crane and Shuttlelift.
For all continuing operations during the quarter, the Manitowoc, Wisconsin-based company reports a loss of USD8.8 million on sales of USD850.0 million, against a USD10.4 million profit on higher sales of USD894.6 million for first quarter 2013.