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WELCOME TO FORKLIFTACTION.COM, MATERIALS HANDLING ONLINE.
This is issue #372 - 07 August 2008 of the weekly newsletter for industry professionals.
Mecano back in German market
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Financial results shape up
There have been indications of strong growth in most markets in the latest round of financial reporting by the major equipment manufacturers.
Komatsu Ltd recorded a 2% gain and JPY57.73 billion (USD534 million) in quarterly profit.
The gains are the result of sales of construction machines in China and other emerging markets even after delays in shipping.
Komatsu expects strong demand for excavators and mining machines to continue in China, Russia and Latin America, which it anticipates will offset the unexpected weakness in more developed economies, particularly Japan and Europe.
Hitachi Construction recorded a 41% gain in quarterly net profit helped in part by tax adjustments.
Caterpillar Inc reported a 34% increase in quarterly profits, a result of increased sales.
Net income increased to a record USD1.11 billion, up from USD823 million last year. Sales increased 20% to USD13.6 billion due to increased demand from road and power grid projects in Asia and the Middle East.
The Manitowoc Company reported an increase of 28% in net sales for the financial quarter ended June 30.
Net sales totalled USD1.3 billion with net sales from the crane business up 32% to USD1.06 billion.
Operating earnings of USD167.0 million were 39 % higher than the second quarter of 2007 in spite of rising material costs and delays in delivering products to areas of China affected by earthquakes and related natural disasters.
Manitowoc saw continued demand for high-capacity crawler, tower and mobile cranes.
Manitou reported an increase in first half revenues of 8.1% to EUR725 million (USD1.12 billion). Sales in France rose by 18% to almost EUR300 million (USD464 million) but fell by 2.4% in other EU countries to EUR330 million (USD511 million). Sales to other regions of the world were up by 19.3% to EUR98 million (USD151 million). Sales in Spain experienced a 70% fall from EUR55 million to EUR24 million (USD85 million to USD37 million). Sales in the UK were down 15%.
However, sales in Germany increased by 44% to EUR42 million (USD65 million).
Telehandler sales approached EUR500 million (USD773 million), a 9% increase on 2007 and aerial lift sales were flat at EUR52 million (USD80 million).
RSC reported first half rental revenues up 6.1% to USD777 million.
Rental rates were up by just under 1% from the first quarter but 0.5% down on a year ago. RSC said that it was deliberately slowing sales of used equipment to reduce capital expenditure and take advantage of its young fleet.
Capital expenditure for the first half of 2008 was USD115 million - 56% lower than in the first half of 2007.
The Liebherr group reported sales reaching new records for most regions for the financial year 2007.
Mobile crane sales increased by 18.4% to EUR1.6 billion (USD2.5 billion), construction cranes – largely tower cranes and duty cycle crawlers - and mixing group sales jumped 28.4% to EUR911 million (USD1.4 billion).
Western Europe produced the largest revenues with increases of 13% to EUR4.28 billion (USD6.7 billion) which is 57% of the company’s business. Eastern European sales were up 32% to EUR751.9 million (USD1.16 billion), with the main growth coming from Russia.
However, sales fell in Asian and Australian markets by 3.5% to EUR724 million (USD1.12 billion) due to the lack of repeats of some major orders in 2006.
United Rentals reported an almost 11% decrease in first half revenues to USD$1.6 billion.
Rental revenues fell 2.8% to $1.2 billion, used sales fell 19%, and new machines sales dropped 27%.
Capital expenditure for the first half was almost 29% lower than the first half of 2007 at USD469 million.
Gehl reported first half revenues of USD193.2 million, a fall of 23% from last year, with gross margins down 25%, falling from 21.8% of revenues last year to 20.5% this year.
Telehandler production fell by 14%, in a market that Gehl claims was down by 23%.
Exports declined by 10% to USD58 million and now represent 30% of total revenues.
Bronto has reported first half revenues up by over 30% to almost EUR67 million (USD103 million) and operating income increased by over 19% to EUR6.3 million (USD9.7 million).
Haulotte announced its second-half results with revenues of EUR259 million (USD401 million), down 12% compared to last year.
The company attributes the decrease to slower sales of new machines in Western Europe, particularly in June. New machine sales were EUR226 million (USD349 million), a 14% fall, with Western Europe down by 23%. However, there was a 22% increase in Eastern Europe. The UK market dropped 7% to EUR15.6 million (USD24 million).
Net income did increase by 39.5% to EUR63 million (USD96 million), but half of this has been linked to the one-off capital gain on the sale of its French rental business, Lev.
Toyota heads Top 20 list
For the sixth year in a row, Toyota Industries Corp has been named the top forklift supplier in Modern Materials Handling’s annual top 20 ranking list.
Toyota’s dominance reflects a global industry that is experiencing steady growth, with worldwide orders increasing by 12% in 2007. Its revenue for 2007 is reported at USD7.8 billion - up 20% from USD6.5 billion in 2006.
The World Industrial Truck Statistics show Europe as the largest market, with orders growing by 16% in 2007 to 400,000 while Asia grew by 17% to 280, 000. The analysts note that they will be keeping an eye on the Asian market and expect many of the Chinese and Indian forklift suppliers to be in the top 20 next year.
The only region to experience a decrease in orders was the United States, with a 3.5% drop.
Commenting on the listing, Stan Simpson, president of the American manufacturers’ peak body, the Industrial Truck Association (ITA), says his group expects order numbers in the US to continue their slight decline over the next two years.
“Compared to 10 years ago, it is still a really great market and US orders and shipments are expected to grow again by the end of 2009.”
Africa experienced a 9% growth and Oceania 17%.
Globally, the number of orders placed in 2007 grew to 955,000 forklifts.
The Kion Group (formerly Linde) has maintained its number two position after recording an increase in revenue from USD4.5 billion in 2006 to USD6.35 billion in 2007.
To be eligible for Modern’s top 20, companies must manufacture and sell forklifts in at least one of the association’s seven classifications. The rankings are based on worldwide revenue in US dollars.
Jungheinrich moved up from the number four position to third after recording the biggest revenue increase of all of the top 20 companies. Sales revenue went from USD1.95 billion to USD3.18 billion.
NACCO Industries and Mitsubishi Caterpillar took the number four and five places, respectively.
The top five forklift suppliers have remained consistent over the past three years with NACCO, Jungheinrich and Mitsubishi Caterpillar battling it out for a place.
Toyota and Jungheinrich attribute much of their growth to the increase in sales in the Chinese and European markets.
The growth in the Chinese market helped The Hangzhou Forklift Truck Co. move up one place to 15th in the rankings. Hangzhou nearly doubled its revenue to USD414 million, up from USD242 million in 2006.
ITA’s Simpson says while the US market is struggling, the world market continues to grow, with dramatic growth in Asia. “We are expecting a 25% increase from China,” he says.
The full list can be found here.
Barloworld gets new leadership in US
The US materials handling operation of Barloworld Ltd has a new president, a restructured branch network and a mandate for growth as the south east region’s exclusive dealer for Hyster forklifts. Barloworld has world headquarters in Sandton, South Africa, near Johannesburg.
Alwyn Smith became president of the Charlotte-based Barloworld Handling LLC unit on 1 July, succeeding Stan Sewell, who retired on 31 July after decades with the company and nine years in the top position. Smith and Sewell collaborated during July to transition functions.
In assignments with sister businesses in South Africa, Smith had been affiliated with Barloworld Logistics, a provider of logistics and supply chain management services, as finance director for three years and, earlier, with the Barloworld Steel Tube unit for 10 years as director of finance and then managing director of the stainless steel business unit.
Smith reports to South Africa-based John Blackbeard, who became chief executive officer of the parent company’s handling division in October 2007.
Courts Holland continues as chief financial officer of the US unit.
In 11 contiguous south east states, Barloworld Handling owns and operates 30 full-service branches.
The business implemented four geography- and market-driven branch consolidations during early and mid-2007.
Barloworld Handling consolidated its Hickory, North Carolina branch with its larger Charlotte site; the Bartow, Florida branch with the Tampa, Florida location; the Columbus, Georgia branch with the Montgomery, Alabama site; and the Jackson, Tennessee branch with the Memphis, Tennessee location.
No official layoffs occurred, says Heather Cummings, Barloworld Handling marketing manager. “People could join other locations,” she says. “Some did not do that, but there was not a layoff of any groups” relating to the forklift branches.
The consolidations followed a 2006 corporate directive to streamline operations. The goal: unlock shareholder value for the publicly traded parent firm.
During 2007, Barloworld’s US industrial distribution division sold its Ditch Witch of Georgia dealerships to Ditch Witch manufacturer Charles Machine Works Inc of Perry, Oklahoma in April and its Freightliner truck dealerships to a consortium of three buyers led by the Texas-based Lonestar Freightliner Group in August. Some administrative layoffs occurred in the US and other workers were transferred to South Africa as a result of those sales.
Barloworld’s US operations had operating profit of ZAR71 million (USD10.4 million) on sales of ZAR1.88 billion (USD275.5 million) for the fiscal year ended 30 September. In the previous fiscal year, the US operating profit was ZAR83 million (USD10.8 million) on sales of ZAR1.81 billion (USD234.8 million).
The US operations employ more than 1,000 persons including more than 400 road service technicians. In 1979, Barloworld Ltd acquired an existing Hyster dealership in Charlotte and began the process of establishing its presence in the US.
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Mecano back in German market
After a rough start in the German market, Mecano Continental is set to reestablish itself with the introduction of a compact hydrostatic rough terrain forklift and a new base.
The Spanish company launched the new Micro-Range H13 and H16 forklifts at CeMAT in Hannover.
Rafael Wefers Verástegui, Mecano’s market development manager, says the reception for these new machines was great.
“There was interest not only at an international level, but there was also big interest from German dealers and customers.”
The Micro-Range is a compact hydrostatic-driven forklift that has similar benefits to a rough terrain machine but is smaller in dimension and turning radius.
This machine is intended for use in construction and agriculture. It can also be used as a semi-industrial forklift (uneven terrain) and for farming, landscaping, fruit and vegetable handling, open-air events, gardens, as well as for tradespeople.
The Micro-Range has a 1.3 to 1.6 ton capacity, is only 1,890 mm (6.2 feet) high and 2,470mm (8.1 feet) long.
Mecano originally entered the market in partnership with Fendt Fördertechnik as the sole distributor to sell the Mast Explorer.
According to Verástegui, the relationship was not as productive as the company had hoped.
“During the agreement with Fendt Fördertechnik, the sales numbers crashed,” says Verástegui. “We asked how this could happen, and after a little bit of research we found out that it was not because of our product.”
Mecano found the poor sales could be traced to numerous marketing errors because it did not apply the company’s standard business concepts.
Verástegui says the type of forklift Mecano manufactures needed a local dealer and by signing an agreement with Fendt, they ignored processes Mecano had used successfully in over 45 countries.
“You have to introduce the product before you can sell it. You have to know the mentality of the customers and dealers,” he says. “We thought to solve this problem, we would start with a unique distributor and it looked like Fendt was a good choice to start sales in Germany.”
However, it did not pay off for Mecano.
“Our products needed a dealer that knew the needs of his clients and was not just a general distributor/importer,” he says. “Rough Terrain Forklifts are specialist machines, not made for a mass-market.”
Mecano has recently signed distribution agreements with 10 regional dealers: Nordrhein-Westfalen, Rheinland-Pfalz, Saarland, Baden-Württemberg, Hessen, Oberfranken and Bayern.
Verástegui says Mecano will establish a base in Germany within the next two years
Barloworld invests in UK hire fleet
Berkshire, United Kingdom
Barloworld Handling has invested GBP10 million (USD19.5 million) in its short-term hire fleet over the past 12 months to meet growing demands for rental equipment.
The UK rental fleet company has recently purchased 340 new Hyster forklifts that will be incorporated into its short-term hire fleet. This purchase follows GBP4 million (USD7.8 million) spent in 2007 on replacements and fleet range extensions.
Barloworld is the exclusive distribution partner for Hyster in the UK.
Some of the equipment Barloworld has purchased to add to its range includes high-capacity 7-, 12- and 18-ton Hyster plant for port operations and heavy industry, and a range of electric warehouse equipment including pallet trucks.
Barloworld will also add low-level order pickers, high-level reach trucks for logistics and warehousing operations, specialist equipment such as high-level order pickers, four-way reach trucks and ATEX-compliant ‘Pyroban’ protected equipment.
Mark Ward, Barloworld’s commercial asset manager, claims “when you consider the complete range of equipment we now stock, including our compact range of 5.5 and 7 ton units, we can genuinely boast to be the most complete provider of equipment in this sector”.
“Much of the more specialist types of equipment such as big trucks are often unavailable elsewhere or in poor condition”.
Barloworld believes increasing its short-term hire fleet will give its customers access to the latest equipment at short notice and help them be more efficient.
“Many of our customers make significant savings by running smaller core fleets and pulling in extra units during periods of seasonal demand,” says Ward.
Raymond Handling re-establishes Orlando presence
Lakeland, FL, United States
Raymond Handling Consultants LC (RHC) has re-established a physical presence in Orlando, Florida, about 45 miles (72 km) from the equity dealership’s headquarters in Lakeland.
Orlando has always been within RHC’s territory, which covers central and northern Florida.
“Large customers need to know that we have a physical presence in, and commitment to, the Orlando market,” says Joe Nenarella, RHC president. “Having a facility in their area gives the customers a better sense of our ability to help them keep their forklift equipment up and running.”
At the Orlando branch, RHC will stock parts and industrial batteries and rent forklifts. The Lakeland site will handle refurbishing needs for the Orlando market.
In the near term, RHC expects to hire more road service technicians. “In spite of the sagging economy, we are continuing to grow our service base and need more technicians to handle the growth,” Nenarella points out.
RHC employs 62 persons in Lakeland and at branches in Orlando and a full-service Jacksonville site that opened in 2000.
Raymond Corp. of Greene, New York established Handling Consultants in 1995 and changed to the RHC identity in May 2000 when Nenarella took charge. The business converted to an equity dealership in January 2003 when Nenarella acquired a majority interest.
RHC moved its headquarters to centrally located Lakeland from Tampa, Florida in August 2006 and closed the Tampa and Orlando facilities.
The new site “is centrally located in a dense (Sand Lake) industrial area of Orlando and is easily accessible from the major highways,” Nenarella notes.
The Lakeland facility occupies 26,000 square feet (2,340 square metres), Jacksonville 13,000 square feet (1,170 square metres) and Orlando 5,000 square feet (450 square metres).
New Kone ship-to-shore crane for Finnish port
The first Konecranes ship-to-shore crane was delivered by barge to the new Vuosaari container terminal in Helsinki.
Terminal operator Steveco Oy purchased the multi-million dollar STS BoxHunter crane to unload Panamax class ships. The company will take possession of a second crane in the Northern spring.
Tomi Rautio, director of the Vuosaari business unit, says Steveco chose Konecranes because they are their preferred supplier.
“We operate their equipment at our Mussalo container terminal and in Kotka as well.”
Juha Aatola, Konecranes director, says the Vuosaari port will have three container terminal operators and Steveco is one of those purchasing STS cranes.
“The others will use old cranes transferred from other ports in Helsinki, which shall be closed down, or will purchased cranes from other vendors,” he says. “In total, there will be eight or nine STS cranes.”
The crane has a lifting capacity of 50 metric tons (55 tons) and a reach of 38 metres (124 feet). It has the ability to be used for different terminal operating models depending on the needs of different shipping lines.
Rautio says the STS crane is the most suitable for this location because it is equipped with the latest automation systems.
“We expect to receive high efficiency for our vessel operation and short turnaround times for feeder vessels.”
Aatola adds this STS crane is designed to handle maximum Panamax-size container ships up to 13 container rows wide.
“The crane is equipped with Konecranes’ advanced crane controls and mechanisms designed especially for crane use. The crane trolley is a BoxHunter type with advanced load-handling control,” he says. “The crane can store containers between the legs to allow fast unloading or loading. In other words, this is a flexible and right size crane for feeder terminal operations.”
The crane was delivered fully erected and taking the crane to full operational mode will take up to four weeks.
Aatola notes that testing and customization will be required, together with local certification.
Rautio adds Steveco will be testing all the terminal operations, including cranes and all yard equipment as well as IT systems before actual operation starts in November 2008.
Materials handling machines go head to head
Warwickshire, United Kingdom
Organisers of the Dairy Event and Livestock Show have organised a duel between two players in the materials handling industry to see which is better.
A live demonstration of tractor loaders and telehandlers will feature for the first time at the show on September 17 and 18 at Stoneleigh Park, Kenilworth.
This is the first time the Dairy Event and Livestock Show has staged a live demonstration of materials handling machinery.
Nick Everington, chief executive of the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers, says the RABDF has staged mixer wagon working demonstrations in a farm environment over the past five consecutive years at the event.
“Feedback from our event survey indicates they are extremely popular, therefore it was a natural progression to introduce a telehandler demonstration.”
"Working machinery in a farm environment is now a firmly established and popular feature of the event," says Everington. “With machinery replacement long overdue on many farms, this new demonstration will help visitors make a more informed decision on what to buy."
The demonstrations will run twice a day on both days of the event and will involve up to 10 handlers and tractor-loader combinations from Alo (Quicke/Trima), Claas, John Deere, Kramer, Massey Ferguson, Merlo and New Holland.
The handlers and tractor loaders will perform a series of typical operations - moving straw bales, fertilizer bags, muck and road planings.
Visitors to the event will have the opportunity to observe the different machines and can short list those most suited to their own farm or circumstances.
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Stanley adds to ROBUR range
Stanley Handling has launched a new ROBUR reach truck designed to fit into tight spaces.
The ROBUR SBC-R compact counterbalance reach truck, manufactured in Italy, is aimed at small to medium-size warehouses where space is at a premium and watching the bottom line is a high priority.
Sarah Stanley, marketing director for Stanley Handling, says the new model can work in an aisle width of just over two metres.
The SBC-R’s load capacity is 1,500 kilograms (1.65 tons) and its lift heights are 4,000mm (13 feet).
New mirrors give all-round view
Bohle Mirror Systems has increased its safety products range by adapting convex mirror technology so it can be applied to forklifts.
The Forklift Half Dome has a wide-angle 180-degree viewing area and is distortion free. The mirror allows the driver to see behind and either side of the forklift.
Attached with a bracket, the mirror is fitted through the cab roof or fixed to the cab upright supports. The back is moulded plastic with an adjustable ball joint, which makes it strong and flexible.
Easily adjusted to different angles, the mirror has an impact-resistant acrylic face and is easy to install and maintain.
New Flexi added to range
West Midlands, UK
Narrow Aisle had added the Euro to its Flexi articulated trucks range.
The new model is a compact four-wheel forklift designed for low bay warehouses where there is little space.
The chassis is1,060mm wide (3.4 feet) and the new model can lift maximum of 1,500kg (1.5 tons) to a height of seven metres.
The narrow front axle can stack narrow continental pallets and work in aisles as narrow as 1,642mm-wide (5.39 feet), or 1,762mm-wide (5.78 feet) with an ISO pallet.
The Euro can be used inside or outside the warehouse facility.
Versatile rider/stacker ideal for small areas
Yale Europe recently announced the release of a new pedestrian controlled rider/stacker that can be used by employees without a forklift licence.
The MC10-15, manufactured in Masate, Italy, is useful in situations where counterbalance forklifts are too large.
This new addition replaces the old MC. The MC10-15 uses a new mast and AC technology - the old one used DC power.
EPA lists Nett catalytic reduction system
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Emission control specialist Nett Technologies Inc has received regulatory approval for aftermarket use of its BlueMax-brand urea-based selective catalytic reduction system (SCR) on certain commonly used Caterpillar engines.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency placed the Nett system on the national clean diesel campaign’s emerging technologies list on July 10.
The system is applicable for nonroad, four-cycle, heavy-duty diesel Caterpillar engine models 3306, 3116 and 3406 in the 75-450 kW (100-600 horsepower) ranges, originally manufactured from 1996 to 2008.
The system aims to control nitrogen oxide emissions from medium- and heavy-duty diesel engines. A urea control strategy relies on a nitrogen oxide concentration measurement by a sensor that is positioned upstream of the SCR catalyst. A control algorithm calculates the necessary urea-dosing rate.
Mississauga-based Nett has not set final pricing on the system.
Movers and Shakers
Greene, NY, United States
Joseph Ginnetti was has been promoted to vice president of sales for the Raymond Corp. with responsibility to oversee all aspects of the firm’s materials handling solutions through its network of dealerships.
Ginnetti has more than 30 years of sales and sales management experience in the industry and, most recently, was manager of Raymond’s business development group. The corporation presented Ginnetti with a 2006 Circle of Excellence award for sales leadership.
Following the appointment of two new sales engineers, the IMC Group has restructured its sales team.
Mike Lightfoot and Phillip Tomlinson will be responsible for sales of IMC products throughout the UK and Ireland.
They join Ed Elliott who has been with Lamerholm for over five years.
Elliott will concentrate on servicing customers in north east England and will remain the product specialist for Equipment Monitors.
Derek Richardson is the company’s sales director and he will be responsible for sales in the south east and Ireland, as well as being responsible for IMC's international distributor network.
New Holland, PA, United States
John J. Stevenson has been named vice president, sales and marketing for New Holland Agriculture in North America.
Stevenson was the president and chief executive officer of American LaFrance LLC. Prior to that, he served in senior management positions at Freightliner, Volvo Trucks North America, and Mack Trucks.
He has extensive experience in organisational management, manufacturing, distribution, purchasing, logistics, product marketing, service, and sales.
Greenwich, CT, United States
Dr Jenne K. Britell, Ph.D. was elected chairman of United Rentals’ board of directors.
She has served on the United Rentals board as a director since 2006. Britell is also chair and chief executive officer of Structured Ventures, Inc.
From 1996 to 2000, she was a senior executive of GE Capital and from 1993 to 1996, Britell was executive vice president, chief lending officer and general manager, Mortgage Banking at Dime Bancorp, Inc.
She is the first American to be approved to run a Polish Bank when she served as the founding Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Polish-American Mortgage Bank in Warsaw in 1992.
Dr. Britell is a director of three other NYSE-listed companies - Crown Holdings, Inc, Quest Diagnostics Incorporated, and West Pharmaceutical Services.
Mitsubishi competition seeks tried and tested forklifts
Houston, Texas, United States
Normally there are no prizes for being old, but a new competition announced this month will give the owner of the oldest operational Mitsubishi forklift a new one.
Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks’ “Keeps on Running” contest is looking for the proud owner of the oldest 900-3,000 kilogram (2,000 – 6,500 pound) small, internal combustion, cushion tyre Mitsubishi forklift.
Eligible models include the entire FGC10-FGC33 model line-up, the current ‘N’ Generation, and all of its predecessors, and must be part of the contestants’ current materials handling fleet.
The winner will receive a new FGC15N- FGC33N Mitsubishi forklift truck. Runners-up will get free Planned Maintenance (PM) services for up to one year.
“The Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks product line is known for providing reliable equipment that will keep our customers’ operations moving,” says Kent Eudy, vice president of marketing for Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks. “After decades of selling quality forklift trucks, we know there are going to be hard-working trucks out there that have outlived expectations, and we want to see them in action.”
Competition details and the application form can be found online.
The application form asks contestants to upload photos and share fun facts about their forklift truck, including its company-given nickname and interesting details about how the forklift truck is used.
Entries close November 30 2008 and the winners will be notified in December.
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Freight transport and climate change report
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Environmental protection campaign group Total Environment Centre (TEC) this week released its final report on the freight transport sector and climate change, pointing to the need for the sector to prepare for national efforts to combat climate change.
“Environmentalists and the industry can work together to get its house in order and be economically and environmentally sustainable. The community push to get effective policies is unstoppable,” says TEC director, Jeff Angel.
The report, Freight Transport & Climate Change: Exposures & Opportunities, reveals that greenhouse gas emissions from trucks, light commercial vehicles, rail, coastal shipping and air freight are poised to double from 1990 levels by 2020. When considered alongside the emissions reductions that climate science is calling for, the proportion of national emissions produced by freight transport may more than triple by 2020 - increasing from 4.07% in 1990 to 13.46% by 2020.
“This report is designed to help transport companies understand what climate change means for them - their exposures to both climate change and climate policy, what they can do to manage these exposures, and how they stand to gain from efforts to combat climate change,” explains Cameron Eren, co-ordinator of the TEC’s Industry Partnership Program and author of the report.
“Rising costs are designed to penalise energy inefficiency. Transport companies that pursue appropriate fuel switching and modal switching opportunities and maximise energy efficiency will safeguard existing margins against rising costs and position themselves for growth in a carbon-constrained world,” says Eren.
Customer satisfaction leads to new order
Kilsyth, Victoria, Australia
Local Aisle-Master distributor Adapt-A-Lift (AAL) has delivered two more of its narrow-aisle articulated forklifts to a satisfied customer, bringing their total fleet to six.
International technology supplier Henkel originally ordered four forklifts from AAL a few years ago when it required an innovative solution to its space challenges at its chemicals division in Australia.
The company needed to consolidate its raw materials from two facilities into a single complex at Kilsyth.
Having heard about the capabilities of Aisle-Master, the company requested a demonstration to see if the forklift’s reputed advantages would solve their logistics problem.
Not only was the performance of the LPG AM20S exactly what they’d hoped for, Henkel asked Adapt-A-Lift to draw up a racking layout, a service AAL provides at no extra cost.
According to Henkel’s engineering and maintenance manager, Peter Petrucci, the new racking plan gave the company a minimum of 25-30% more space. “And the three-way catalytic converter fitted to the machine takes care of any exhaust emissions,” he adds.
The forklifts come equipped with 6,352mm lift height, side shift and fork positioners.
“Not only has the decision to go with Aisle-Masters saved space inside the warehouse but also outside,” he explains. “The space we saved in one section enabled us to open up our pre-weighing area, giving us efficiencies and time saving improvements.”
Forklift training offers new hope
Nelson, New Zealand
A number of people made redundant by New Zealand mussel factory, Sealord, have turned to forklifts for a new start.
According to an article in the Nelson Mail, about 60 of the 343 employees made redundant last month have taken up the company’s offer of forklift training.
Fifty-seven positions were made available at the Tahunanui factory for affected staff, while about 100 have taken temporary positions at Sealord's Vickerman St factory for the hoki season, with the possibility of being offered a permanent job in the future.
Business confidence down, exports up
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
The June quarter Commonwealth Bank – ACCI survey on business expectations in Australia released this week shows a significant fall in business confidence and reported business conditions.
The survey assessed business conditions and confidence among 2,121 businesses around the country over April, May and June.
Business confidence fell to its lowest level since the survey began in 1994 and general business conditions were at the lowest level for five years.
Among the survey’s indicators, only export sales were sound and continued to grow over the quarter despite a stronger Australian dollar.
Growth indicators such as sales, profits, employment and investment all moved down over the quarter.
On a positive note, cost pressures eased moderately for business, with wage and non-wage labour costs growing at a slower pace.
Collaboration is key for NZ logistics companies
Auckland, New Zealand
Supply chain collaboration is a key to success for New Zealand companies involved in manufacturing, distribution and logistics.
“External and internal cross-collaboration creates efficiencies and buy-in, says Alan Stenger, who recently completed his term as the Ports of Auckland Visiting Professor and Chair in Logistics and Supply Chain Management at The University of Auckland Business School.
“New Zealand companies have an advantage as many are relatively small and can more easily achieve cross-functional co-operation naturally. They can put the framework in place early and it’s there as the company grows.”
Involving key people across business functions helps to maximise organisational performance by avoiding potential conflicts in objectives, or domination by any one internal department
“Externally, vertical relationships need to be fostered with customers, suppliers and logistics providers, covering the sharing of information and even assets where possible. Collaboration helps avoid duplicated processes and redundant activities or inventories, and efficiencies can be achieved by working with others to avoid half-full vehicles and empty containers on back runs.”
However, he warns that the small number of players in the New Zealand market can create commercial sensitivities. In addition, New Zealand conditions are challenging – for example, the topography severely constrains the transportation and ports network, particularly with regard to highway and railway infrastructure.
The Chair in Logistics and Supply Chain Management is funded by Ports of Auckland with a NZD1 million grant over five years.
Upcoming ICHCA Lunches
Two ICHCA state lunches are planned for coming months. In Adelaide, Gerard Anderson, CEO of Centrex Metals Ltd, will speak on Centrex Metals and Eyre Peninsula developments. The lunch will be on 27 August at The Lakes Resort Hotel.
In Brisbane, Brad Fish, CEO of Ports Corporation of Queensland (PCQ), will talk about future development plans for the port, including the emerging port of Abbot Point, now the location for Queensland’s latest State Development Area. The lunch will be held at Ballymore on 5 September.
Freight decision-makers meet in September
The 8th Annual AusIntermodal takes place at Hilton on the Park in Melbourne on 3-4 September.
The summit brings together government officials, the CEOs of Australia’s major ports, freight operators, shipping lines, rail companies, stevedores, and infrastructure companies to discuss the future of Australian freight.
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A breakthrough for fleet management and OH&S: Linde FleetFOCUS
FleetFOCUS is the latest addition to the Linde arsenal of Customer Service and Business tools. FleetFOCUS provides Linde’s clients with a management system that allows them to better monitor their site activities, and provide the necessary information to drive positive change in any fleet.
The planned release for FleetFOCUS is November 2008. If you would like to know more about this exciting addition to the Linde brand, please do not hesitate to contact your local Linde branch for more information.
Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
Taiwan Dihshiang offers a complete range of Tie Rods for the Forklift Industry
Taiwan Dihshiang manufactures a global range of forklift spare parts for tie rod end and ball joints. These products can be used for Toyota, TCM, Komatsu, Nissan, Hyster, etc.
With many years experience, we produce products which have been successfully exported to OEM and AfterMarket customers in more than 30 countries globally.
Ruyi Launches New Xilin QDD Electric Tractor
RUYI’s newly designed Xilin QDD electric tractor varies from previous models, boasting three wheels, a compact design and a flexible steering system. The Xilin range is environmentally friendly: no pollution, low noise levels and frugal energy consumption.
Dave Hoover: Don’t skimp on the practice
NEWARK, OH, United States
The hands-on part of training cannot be underestimated.
Click here for the full Safety First feature, including pictures.
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