FORKLIFTACTION.COM
MATERIALS HANDLING ONLINE #25 June 21, 2001
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The fortnightly newsletter for industry professionals.
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IN THIS ISSUE:
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1. FINNING CONTINUES UK EXPANSION
2. DIRECT SALES PAY OFF FOR NISSAN AUSTRALIA
3. DISABLED USER FORKLIFT DEVELOPED
4. DUBAI PORTS SPENDS UP ON SATELLITE TRACKING
5. MOVERS & SHAKERS
6. MALAYSIAN THIEF STEALS COUGH DROPS
7. ADVERTISEMENT - 400-PLUS FORKLIFTS FOR SALE IN NATIONAL FLEET NETWORK AUCTION
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1. FINNING CONTINUES UK EXPANSION
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VANCOUVER, Canada -- Finning International Inc has, through its United Kingdom subsidiary Hewden Stuart, acquired the 640-unit materials handling arm of Wolverhampton-based Maxxiom Ltd, which rents telescopic handlers and rough-terrain forklifts.

The purchase price has not been released by Finning or Maxxiom.

The move expands Hewden Stuart's telescopic handlers and rough-terrain forklift fleet to 2200 units, strengthening its position as one of the leading forklift rental companies in the UK.

Finning, which sells and rents Caterpillar equipment in Western Canada, the UK and Chile, acquired Hewden Stuart in a USD465 million takeover in January. That made Finning the leading equipment distributor in the UK, with more than 400 outlets and almost 6000 employees.

Finning vice president and corporate treasurer Anthony Guglielmin said the acquisition would be earnings positive immediately.

"In acquiring Hewden Stuart, Finning recognised the importance of having a significant position in this industry as it continues to go through a period of consolidation," he said.

The acquisition "reflects Finning's commitment to the UK plant hire market, and the continued consolidation in the market".

Maxxiom was formed in 1998, and is a leading supplier of hoists, lifts and booms to the UK market through its subsidiaries, Maxxiomhoists and Maxxiomaccess.
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2. DIRECT SALES PAY OFF FOR NISSAN AUSTRALIA
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SYDNEY, Australia -- Nissan Forklift Australia's (NFA) market share in the Australian engine-powered forklifts segment has jumped from 18% in May 2000 to 25%.

NFA general manager John Ackland said the latest figures, representing engine powered forklift deliveries for the five months to May, showed NFA's move to establish direct retail outlets throughout Australia was paying off.

NFA began opening factory-direct outlets throughout Australia last year and, in March, opened Queensland Fork Trucks in Brisbane, Queensland. The Queensland dealership joins NFA's existing factory-direct dealerships in Sydney, New South Wales, Adelaide, South Australia, and Perth, Western Australia.

Mr Ackland said consistency could not be achieved with "fragmented dealerships".

"The establishment of our own branches enables us to provide quality products and services to the client, direct from the manufacturer," he said.

"We supply some large, national accounts which need the support of our branches, and this has resulted in us terminating our relationships with some non-performing dealers."

Mr Ackland said the world forklift market had changed, and the level of competition demanded a new approach. "Forklift buyers want more than just a forklift, they want a complete materials handling solution," he said.

"Competition is tough and, as manufacturers, we must be prepared to go further, try harder and do more to win business" and retain clients.

NFA, Nissan's leading division in regional market shares, had responded to the changes through customer base-building exercises aimed at long-term relationships.

Mr Ackland said NFA sales staff consulted potential clients on-site, discussed clients' requirements and tailored forklift solutions individually.

"We might suggest to somebody with an ageing fleet that we not just replace the forklifts, but design a fixed-cost product and maintenance package. Flexibility is everything," Mr Ackland said.

"We are not in the business of just selling forklifts. It has to be a lot more than that."

NFA hopes the July launch of a new range of one to three tonne forklifts, the first new product to be built at Nissan Motor Co Ltd's new plant in Yokohama, Japan, will further increase its Australian growth.

Nissan's Japan forklift operation has been stagnant since the company's Murayama plant closed in March. The company has spent two months transferring its operations to the Yokohama site, which began manufacturing this month.
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3. DISABLED USER FORKLIFT DEVELOPED
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BASINGSTOKE, United Kingdom -- Lansing Linde has developed a forklift that changes modes to allow able-bodied and disabled operators to use the same machine.

Lansing delivered a modified version of its Active reach truck in the UK this month, after a company made a special order for a long-serving operator who had developed a disability in his right leg that restricted its use.

Technicians developed a truck which can be switched to "disabled operator" mode with the turn of an auxiliary key. The driver uses the left foot to control traction and braking. Steering, or "direction selection", is controlled by the right hand. In this mode, the traction pedal for the right foot is deactivated.

Removal of the auxiliary key reverts the forklift to standard mode, enabling other operators to drive it, using both traction pedals for acceleration and steering. A warning plate is prominent on the truck to inform operators of its dual-mode capabilities.
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4. DUBAI PORTS SPENDS UP ON SATELLITE TRACKING
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LJUNGBY, Sweden -- Kalmar Industries is filling an order for the Dubai Ports Authority (DPA) to fit Kalmar's Smartrail automatic steering and container position verification systems to 40 RTG cranes at DPA's Jebel Ali terminal in the United Arab Emirates.

Kari Ronkainen, general manager of Kalmar division Knowhow Services, said the order was significant for Kalmar, as it was the first time the company had installed the system on machines other than its own. DPA bought four Hyundai Super Post-Panamax gantries last year, but has other equipment at the terminal.

Neither DPA nor Kalmar disclosed how much the deal was worth.

"The first stage of this project has now been successfully completed and, according to DPA, the Smartrail automatic steering system has been superior in comparison to the system previously used," Mr Ronkainen said.

Negotiations began in 1999, and the cheque was signed last July. The Kalmar system was the only one that met DPA's requirements, he said.

"Kalmar Industries has pioneered the use of GPS technology with RTGs. Today, the Smartrail system is being used in numerous applications throughout the world."

The first stage of the three-stage Smartrail integration project involved completing design work, providing DPA with one RTG pre-fitted with Smartrail, delivering a GPS ground station, and testing the DPA yard management system.

The second and third stages of the project will be completed by October. Stage two will see 25 RTG cranes fitted with the automatic steering system, and the transfer of container tracking data to a central yard management system. Stage three will see the installation of automatic steering systems on the 14 remaining RTGs.

"DPA had a good understanding of terminal automation and knew exactly what it wanted to achieve," Mr Ronkainen said.
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5. MOVERS & SHAKERS
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LEXINGTON, USA -- Clark Materials Handling Company and its chairman, Martin M Dorio, have "parted company". Sources close to the split said a dispute with the company's unsecured creditors' committee, which is overseeing the company's debts in light of Clark's Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing last April, led to Mr Dorio resigning. Forkliftaction.com's source said the split was "amicable", and Mr Dorio is expected to continue serving the company in an informal manner.

HOUSTON, USA -- Tadashi Sotoike, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries' (MHI) Sagamihara plant general manager, has been appointed president of Mitsubishi-Caterpillar Forklift America in Houston. Mr Sotoike has been with MHI for more than 30 years. Mr Sotoike said he was "pleased to have been given the opportunity to help lead this organisation to an even greater future".
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6. MALAYSIAN THIEF STEALS COUGH DROPS
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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia -- Police are mystified by a robbery at a Kuala Lumpur warehouse where thieves used a forklift to steal more than USD526,000 of super-strong throat lozenges.

Assistant police commissioner Hussin Ismail said five men entered a warehouse in Shah Alam and disconnected a video security system before loading thousands of packets of Fisherman's Friend lozenges into a truck, the New Straits Times reported.

The warehouse was full of other items, but the lozenges were the only items taken. Police believe it was an inside job, as the thieves appeared to have intimate knowledge of the security system, and knew what they were after, Ismail said.
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7. - ADVERTISEMENT -
400-PLUS FORKLIFTS FOR SALE IN NATIONAL FLEET NETWORK UNRESERVED AUCTION
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MELBOURNE, Australia National Fleet Network a subsidiary of the Nacco Materials Handling Group (NMHG) is selling more than 450 used forklifts in an unreserved auction in Melbourne, Victoria, on July 12.

Auctioneer Gray Eisdell Matthews is conducting the auction on behalf of NFN, in what will be one of Australia's largest forklift auctions.

The fleet to be sold includes:
- Hyster XM units of 2.5 to three tonne (5000lb to 6000lb) capacity
- Caterpillar, TCM and Yale diesel and dual fuel forklifts from 2.5 to eight tonne capacity
- Toyota, Clark, Komatsu and Daewoo diesel and dual fuel machines of varied capacities
- Toyota, Hyster, TCM, Crown, Atlet, Nissan, NYK, Raymond and other counter-balance electric forklifts, reach trucks, order pickers and pallet jacks
- A range of electric tugs, attachments, masts and accessories

The sale of some full container handlers is yet to be confirmed.

The fleet is surplus to ongoing requirements.

The auction is at 11am on July 12 at 2167 Princes Highway, Clayton, Victoria. Units can be inspected on July 11 from 8.30am to 4.30pm. More information, phone Adam Scharer at Gray Eisdell Matthews on +61-3-9548-4444 or email adam@grays.com.au.

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