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This is issue #422 - 07 August 2009 of the weekly newsletter for industry professionals.
Crown order picker, JLG LiftPod win awards


Cost-cutting while waiting for the upswing
Panel affirms Maintainco case against MCFA
Terex completes buy, copes with slowdown
Terberg meets growth potential outside Europe
SAUR and KAUP co-operate in Brazil
KION shareholders show faith with mega-loan
Modern Group tightens distribution operations
Univar partners Pyroban for safe approach
Crown order picker, JLG LiftPod win awards
Movers & Shakers
Sample of used equipment for sale
Crown shows secret, withholds details

Linfox wins major logistics contract
Freight survey reveals growing NZ confidence
Linde completes NSW installation
Komatsu Forklift officially opens in Australia
Less port-related traffic on roads
Container growth at Port Botany

Ningbo Ruyi Introduces CDD series High Lift Electric Stackers
WE-LIFT release some popular forklift spare parts
CoGri Group Aced Down Under
Aussie Success Ready To Spread Their Wings - Warehouse Safety Solutions

Hoist Liftruck introduces its pneumatic redesign
If it's got to be EX - It's got to be a RICO

Generate leads through advertising!

FORK TALK: FLTA wants to recognise industry’s best

SAFETY FIRST: Richard Shore: Precaution is better than cure

Industry Profile: Bolzoni Auramo

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One of the industry’s longest-running acquisitions has finally been bedded down, with Terex’s take-over of Fantuzzi. This on-again, off-again deal brings together two giants of the crane sector and should produce significant economies of scale as well as logistical and support synergies. At the other end of the scale, we report this week on another union of sorts – the co-operation agreement between Germany’s family-controlled KAUP attachments maker and Brazil’s family-managed SAUR company. This union combines local networks with global R&D and should benefit both parties.

Cost-cutting while waiting for the upswing
Materials handling companies worldwide are implementing cost-cutting measures to counter the effects of the global financial crisis, but no-one is predicting when the market will recover.

This week, News reports that Toyota Industries Corp (TICO), the parent company of leading forklift brand Toyota, has experienced a 44% drop in net sales for the first quarter in its materials handling equipment segment.

TICO, in its investor relations report, attributes the decrease to “a significant decline in unit sales of forklifts, a mainstay product of this segment for the Toyota and BT brands, triggered by the global market contraction”.

TICO’s subsidiary, Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing Inc, the US manufacturing plant for Toyota forklifts, has already cut its Indiana workforce by about 15%. Early retirements, voluntary departures and performance-based cuts accounted for most of the staff reductions. The plant even imposed seven non-production days on the workforce in March and April ( News #416).

Competitor Linde Material Handling is also not immune from the shrinking forklift market. However, Manfred Höhn, head of communications, is upbeat, telling News that while the global forklift market halved in the first half of 2009 compared to 2008, “sales and order intake for Linde are developing above market figures”.

“In general, all truck segments and regions are impacted. Warehouse trucks are slightly less affected because they are often used in the food industry and in distribution and retail, which is more stable than the manufacturing industries,” Höhn says.

Höhn explains that the German forklift giant’s prudence resulted in the manufacturer taking measures to anticipate the global economic crisis as early as in the northern hemisphere autumn of 2008.

He will not say when the global forklift market will improve, only that Linde “has laid all necessary foundations to deal with an upswing at any time”.

Staff at Linde Material Handling’s Basingstoke plant in the UK were told in June that the forklift company would close the local production line in response to a 50% drop in demand. About 350 people will lose their jobs, but sales and marketing, after-sales and administration staff would remain ( News #415).

Dan Pettersson, vice president of Kalmar Counterbalanced Products at Cargotec, agrees that the global financial crisis has affected many markets and customer segments around the world: “The Asia Pacific area saw greater levels of activity than elsewhere in the world, but also in South America and Africa the order intake levels remained more stable.”

Cargotec’s interim report for January-June 2009 show that Kalmar’s order intake totalled EUR411 million (USD591 million) for the period, 52% lower than in 2008. Sales totalled EUR588 million (USD846.4 million), 18% down from 2008.

Kalmar has closed its Ljungby plant and consolidated production in the Lidhult plant, reduced staff at its factories, implemented shorter working weeks and restructured its sales and service organisation to limit the effects of the crisis ( News #413).

In these competitive times, Pettersson says Stockholm-based Kalmar is focusing on being proactive and “supporting customers even better during these hard times, making sure we are there for them when the market improves again”.

Despite the financial crisis, Kalmar is pressing on with its R&D activities to improve its product offerings and widen their range of applications. “We are constantly looking for opportunities in new and growing customer segments and a good example of this is the wind energy sector, where we have developed unique solutions for a number of big players. Further discussions with these and other customers in the wind energy sector are ongoing and will surely bear more fruit in the future,” Pettersson says.

Pettersson says he can’t predict when the global economy will recover. “In today’s  situation, the market is not functioning in a normal way. Decisions are being postponed and decision making and financing processes are being prolonged due to the economic uncertainty. Already we have a quotation backlog that during normal circumstances would result in a substantially higher order intake.”

Over in China, E-P Equipment’s export business has suffered. Spokeswoman Sang Tian says while E-P’s forklift exports are down by 50%, its domestic sales and orders are stable.

Sang believes that the global financial crisis has hit the US and European markets harder “since those markets’ prior sales volumes are very high”.

“Asia, Africa and South America are generally stable markets as their pre-financial crisis export volumes are low compared to the US and Europe,” Sang says.

Meanwhile, the forklift manufacturer is trying to stimulate overseas and domestic demand by focusing on new product development, raising its quality control level, improving service levels and “waiting to catch the turning point”.

“We don’t know [when the market will improve], but at least it won’t get worse. We believe we have reached the bottom,” Sang says.
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Panel affirms Maintainco case against MCFA
Trenton, NJ, United States
An appellate court in New Jersey has affirmed Maintainco’s trial court verdict against Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America Inc (MCFA), holding that a franchisor such as MCFA cannot constructively terminate a dealer.

“We are, of course, delighted with the decision of the court, and we look forward to continuing to work hard to continue to make Maintainco a successful and respected dealership,” says James G Picarillo, president of Maintainco. In New Jersey, the dealership is based in South Hackensack and operates another location in South Plainfield.

A three-judge panel of the Superior Court of New Jersey Appellate Division in Trenton heard oral arguments on 23 March and disclosed a decision on 30 July. Judge Joseph F Lisa delivered the opinion for a unanimous court. The other panel members were Judges Susan L Reisner and Paulette Sapp-Peterson.

The Maintainco legal team has filed motions to apply for the defendant’s payment of Maintainco’s cost of appeal. Theodore Margolis, who represents Maintainco, is a senior trial attorney in the Bridgewater, New Jersey office of the law firm Norris McLaughlin & Marcus PA.

The MCFA legal team may file either a motion for reconsideration or a petition for certification to the Supreme Court of New Jersey. Kevin McNulty and H John Shank II represented MCFA in the oral arguments. Each is a director of business and commercial litigation with the Newark, New Jersey office of the law firm Gibbons PC. Requests to MCFA counsel for comment were not answered.

In May 2008, Maintainco filed for reimbursement of more than USD4 million in legal fees and costs shortly after a trial judge found MCFA liable for breach of contract and violation of the New Jersey Franchise Practices Act ( News #311). The recent appellate opinion reduced the amount by USD477, 611, “representing expert fees”, but interest on the judgment that the trial court awarded Maintainco exceeds the expert fee amounts.

Maintainco sued MCFA in September 2000 to stop the termination by MCFA of Maintainco’s franchise. MCFA established another Mitsubishi distributor, Mid-Atlantic Handling Systems LLC, in Maintainco’s exclusive territory. Maintainco began selling Mitsubishi forklifts in 1982 and, starting in 1985, was granted an exclusive Mitsubishi sales territory covering 12 counties in northern New Jersey. Maintainco added Toyota Material Handling USA products in nine overlapping counties in 1992.

According to court filings, MCFA decided in June 1999 to terminate Maintainco as a dealer. Mid-Atlantic began operations in July 2000 and, in 2003, filed for bankruptcy protection and was liquidated.

Joint venture MCFA of Houston, Texas uses a “two-brands, one-promise” strategy in marketing lines of Mitsubishi and Caterpillar forklifts. The success of the Maintainco litigation affirms the rights of a franchisee and may influence the ongoing MCFA effort to have certain dealerships represent both brands.

To stay the judgment by the trial court, MCFA had to file a letter of credit for the full amount of the judgment of more than USD5 million plus interest. Maintainco holds the letter of credit.
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Terex completes buy, copes with slowdown
Westport, CT, United States
Terex Corp has completed its acquisition of the port equipment businesses of Fantuzzi Industries sarl and reported its second-quarter sales fell by 55% from 2008’s comparable quarter.

In the acquisition for USD220 million (EUR155 million), Terex gets the Fantuzzi and Noell lines for incorporation with the Terex crane business segment. Products include Noell-branded straddle carriers, both Fantuzzi- and Noell-branded rail and rubber-tyred gantry cranes, mobile harbour cranes, ship-to-shore cranes, and reach stackers and forklift trucks. Fantuzzi is based in Lentigione, Italy.

In preparation for the transaction, Terex and JP Morgan Chase International Financing Ltd agreed on 22 July on an incremental term loan assumption, and Terex reached an agreement on 23 July with certain of Fantuzzi’s Italian lenders. Diversified equipment manufacturer Terex is borrowing USD66 million from JP Morgan and USD48 million from the Italian banks {statlink|1|( News, #404)}.

In a 23 July security analysts’ conference call, Terex executives discussed results for the second quarter ended 30 June.

Sales in the crane segment declined 41% to USD491.0 million from USD833.8 in the previous corresponding quarter, but a bigger drop occurred in the aerial work platform segment.

Terex has other segments in the construction and materials processing/mining businesses.

Quarterly sales in the aerial work platforms segment decreased 72.2% to USD209.9 million versus USD755.4 million in the comparable 2008 quarter.

Terex says demand for aerial work platforms “has exhibited signs of stability during the last six months, although at low levels. Due to continuing economic uncertainty, customers are ordering equipment when needed, rather than planning purchases in advance as they did in prior periods, resulting in minimal levels of backlog.”

Rental customers continue to age and reduce their fleets, and “as a result, are deferring the purchase of new aerial and telehandler products”, Terex reports. “The core markets for aerials in North America and Europe remain at very depressed levels. The utility business is continuing to see similar levels of order inquiries when compared with the comparable period in 2008.”

In aerial work platforms, “we sold about USD215 million more of equipment than we manufactured in the first six months of this year”, notes Ron DeFeo, Terex chairman and chief executive officer. “This was good for inventory reduction but certainly not for earnings. Once inventory returns to a more balanced position, then earnings will improve.”

The economic crisis impacted the aerial work platform business first “and it’s been hit the hardest”, according to Tom Riordan, Terex president and chief operating officer. Segment reductions exceed 40% in headcount and approximately 59% in manufacturing expenditures.

“We have remained focused on our customers in meeting their needs, making sure we take quick action to reduce capacity and not add to the oversupply position in the channel,” Riordan reports.

Aerial work platforms “is a business that has the potential to come back and come back quickly, but predicting when it comes back is impossible at this moment in time,” DeFeo says.

Tim Ford, president of Terex aerial work platforms, notes, “We are running our factories at around halftime at this stage” and seeing some material cost reductions, but “we don’t have enough volume to run it through the factory as we are trying to manage the business for cash.”

Ford reports rental companies in both the US and Europe began ageing their aerial work platform fleets about one year ago and have reduced those fleets between 5% and 10%.

DeFeo indicates Terex is cautious about acquisitions but aims to “get Fantuzzi done correctly” through “a complete game plan” for its integration within the corporation.
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Terberg meets growth potential outside Europe
Benschop, Netherlands
Terberg Benschop has established its fourth overseas branch, Terberg Middle-East, in Dubai.

According to Terberg, the Dubai office that serves its Middle Eastern and African customers is “a logical result of Terberg’s success on the global market” with its terminal and RoRo tractors.

In 2008, Terberg built 1,250 vehicles, two-thirds of which were produced for the European market.

Terberg Middle East manager Ron van Arkel says there is also growth potential for the special vehicles manufacturer outside of Europe. In 2007, Terberg established a joint venture in Malaysia named Terberg Tractors Malaysia that supplies the South East Asian and Australian markets.

“The Middle East and Africa are also important selling areas. These areas can be supplied fast and efficiently from Dubai,” says van Arkel.

Terberg Middle East has an office and warehouse in Dubai. Its first delivery is 80 yard tractors to the Port of Dubai. So far, 40 vehicles have been delivered to DP World. The terminal tractors will be used in Jebel Ali.

“We work in the free zone, within a stone’s throw from the new port, an ideal location for the customers in the Emirates and in the surrounding countries,” says van Arkel.

From Dubai, Terberg has access to customers in neighbouring countries like Oman, Qatar and Egypt, and African countries like Kenya, Mozambique and South Africa.

George Terberg, director of Terberg Benschop, says the opening of Terberg Middle East shows that the manufacturer is serious about boosting its position in the world market.

“Terberg [vehicles] are already working in more than 80 countries. With our new Dubai site, we confirm our reputation that we are always as close as possible to the customer, anywhere in the world,” Terberg says.
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SAUR and KAUP co-operate in Brazil
Aschaffenburg, Germany
Brazilian attachment manufacturer SAUR Equipamentos S.A. and Germany’s KAUP GmbH & Co. KG have formed an agreement to co-operate in Brazil. With immediate effect SAUR will market and sell the complete product range of the European manufacturer, with the majority of local requirements manufactured at the SAUR production plant in Panambí using KAUP components.

Ingrid Saur, managing director of SAUR Equipamentos S.A. sees KAUP as a natural co-operation partner.

SAUR began manufacturing attachments under KAUP licence in the 1970s.

“We have a common past history, both are family-managed businesses with nearly the same business philosophies and views, so that our co-operation is built on common interests,” Saur says.

Since SAUR’s initial KAUP licence expired, it has continued to independently design attachments which largely followed the KAUP design philosophy.

The new agreement gives SAUR exclusive rights for the entire KAUP attachment programme in Brazil.

Holger Kaup, managing director of KAUP GmbH & Co. KG, meanwhile, also welcomes the deal, seeing SAUR as “the ideal partner” because of its local mar-keting skills and its “manufacturing know-how for our products”.

In order to manufacture locally, SAUR will receive components such as side-shifter kits and clamp body kits. These will be completed at the Panambí plant, where they will be combined with local components for delivery as complete state-of-the-art attachments.
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KION shareholders show faith with mega-loan
Wiesbaden, Germany
KION’s shareholders are injecting at least EUR100 million (USD143.9 million) into the company to “cushion” it from the global recession and accelerate its growth plans.

KION head of communications Michael Hauger tells News that Goldman Sachs and private equity company KKR have offered the forklift maker a loan “in the magnitude of EUR100 million (USD143.9 million)”.

“Although KION [is performing] very well under the circumstances of the current global recession, the company does not require any additional cash.

“Our net cash position is very strong and cash flows are also solid,” Hauger says.

However, the loan from KION’s shareholders is “a sign of their strong support of KION’s business and an additional cushion as well, which could be used to further accelerate KION’s growth strategy, and make use of potential growth opportunities during this crisis”, he explains.

Last month, German economic daily Handelsblatt reported that KION was renegotiating its covenants with its financing partners. Hauger clarified then that KION is able to fulfill all its covenants for the first half of financial year 2009 and “there is no need to renegotiate credit terms” ( News #419).

Hauger added that KION’s examining of its financial arrangements and updating its financing partners on its business developments was “normal” and had nothing to do with Goldman Sachs and KKR.

He also told News that KION had a strong net cash position and would invest about EUR100 million (USD143.9 million) in group R&D efforts.
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Modern Group tightens distribution operations
Bristol, PA, United States
Modern Group Ltd has restructured its operations as a single integrated full-line industrial distributor and no longer operates as a holding company in the mid-Atlantic region.

While positioning for future growth, “2009 is a significant challenge to top line, but we remain cash positive”, says Dave Griffith, president and chief executive officer since 1995. “We will be doing acquisitions as we come out of the current environment.”

Senior personnel with units of the Bristol-based Modern Group have assumed new responsibilities. Carl Rathemacher, formerly Modern Handling Equipment president, is now a special advisor to the CEO on acquisitions. Gerry Couch, formerly president of Modern Equipment & Sales Co, is now senior vice president of sales across all Modern Group businesses.

“We are streamlining the company and creating single points of contact in all of our operations,” Griffith notes, adding that the restructuring allows Modern to provide customers with a full range of product offerings while maintaining a dedicated sales force and application specialists for specific products and services.

Griffith intends for the change to make operations more efficient and leverage the company’s investments in technology.

Modern Group employs more than 500 staff at 21 locations in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland and provides sales, leasing, short-term rental, service, parts, training and financing services.

Predecessor firm Rapids Handling Equipment Co was formed in 1946, became a franchised dealer for Hyster in 1947 and, through the years, has logged about 33 acquisitions. Modern Group Ltd was formed as a holding company in 1979 to manage acquisitions.

Now, in addition to Hyster, Modern Group represents JLG, Genie, Generac and New Holland brands and a total of more than 400 product lines involving materials handling and construction equipment and power systems and generators.

The company operates under an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) that went to a 100% status in 2003. Previously, a number of individual shareholders owned most of the business through an ESOP. The firm withholds sales figures.
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Univar partners Pyroban for safe approach
Sussex, United Kingdom
European chemical specialist Univar is standardising its explosion-proof forklift fleet using Pyroban technology.

For the first time, Univar operations managers from all over Europe gathered at Pyroban’s headquarters in the UK for bespoke training on the new pan-European safety practice.

“We don’t do the bare minimum on health and safety. We exceed legal requirements and do what is ethically correct for all concerned,” says Martyn Bapty, Univar’s European operations project manager.

Univar distributes industrial and specialty chemicals via 170 distribution centres in North America, Europe and China. It has about 250 forklifts in its European facilities, with about 20% used in zone 1 or zone 2 potentially explosive atmospheres.

“Handling flammable solvents using forklifts has always been a focal point for site safety policy because of their potential to cause an ignition through energy or heat,” Bapty explains.

Univar wants to standardise its forklift safety approach in line with its Europe-wide management system, “U+”, which requires each site to “continually improve their safety, health, environmental and quality performance”.

During a factory tour, Univar operations managers witnessed a fleet of seven Jungheinrich DFG425s being converted for zone 2 operation in their Nordic operation.

“Our basic truck is a 2.5 tonne diesel machine and we selected two German brands after involving operators in trials,” Bapty says. Both forklift suppliers use a turbo-charged VW engine, which allows higher operating temperatures.

Bapty says Pyroban is the only company with expertise to convert both forklift brands to ATEX. (ATEX is the legal framework for controlling explosive atmospheres and standards of equipment and protective systems used in them.)

“The demonstrations at Pyroban showed how we can achieve the protection levels we need and keep the original controls and ergonomic benefits offered by a premium truck,” Bapty adds.

The Pyroban solution for zone 1 is passive, while for zone 2, it provides an active approach through gas/vapour detection, shutdown and component modification. For the “safe areas” outside of the zones, Pyroban’s Gascheka gas detection and shut down system will be used on most of the standard forklifts.
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Crown order picker, JLG LiftPod win awards
Dulles, VA, United States
A line of low-level order pickers from Crown Equipment Corp and the LiftPod aerial work platform from a JLG Industries Inc subsidiary in Australia won top 2009 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA).

The new Crown GPC 3000 series of pickers for warehousing and logistic applications focuses on market needs in Europe, Australia, the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

Branded as LiftPod by JLG, the personal and portable platform can serve as an alternative to a ladder. Its enclosed platform offers a 360-degree range of motion.

Both entries won gold awards in the commercial and industrial products category.

Crown of New Bremen, Ohio and Formation Design Group Inc of Atlanta, Georgia collaborated on the order pickers, and JLG ProLift Pty Ltd in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia and design-related firms worked on the LiftPod.

“A clear understanding of user process and exceedingly crisp design brought strong innovation to an existing product typology,” says Joyce Bromberg, director of research for the WorkSpace Futures group at Steelcase Inc of Grand Rapids, Michigan and a juror in the awards.

Fellow judge Stephen Melamed, principal with Tres Design Group in Chicago, notes: “Crown has consistently demonstrated innovation for the targeted end user and a modern and well defined aesthetic for their visual brand language.”

The same jurors critiqued the LiftPod, which has a working height of 14 feet (4.2 m) and can be assembled in less than 30 seconds.

“I appreciated the thought that went into the LiftPod,” Bromberg says. “The fact that it can be assembled and moved by one person and is well priced (about USD2,000) offers users the safety of a product that ordinarily might be out of reach for them.”

Melamed notes: “The LiftPod is an ingenious take on an age-old commercial problem. Creating a machine that can be transported and set up by one person makes this an ideal solution for a variety of applications. Developing a gearing system that can drive the cab up and down with a half-inch (12.5 mm) drill or a battery is extremely clever.”

Models of the Crown order picker range in length between 7.75-14 feet (2.3-4.2 m) depending on the fork tines. The line’s five models cost EUR9,700-15,000 (USD13,300-20,500), lift 1,200-2,000 kg (2,640-4,400 pounds) and entered the market in August 2007.

Crown perceived a challenge to create an order picker that would increase sales and marketshare. Comprehensive research focused on viewpoints of the warehouse manager, service manager and operator and involved analyzing the smallest details of order picking. The designers found that some operators were walking around or moving through the vehicle up to 90% of the time. The design results: an extra-wide operator compartment, large pick-position controls and work-assist accessories including a patent-pending fold-down step on each side and an X10 control handle for all truck functions.

By weight, steel constitutes more than 90% of the total content. Approximately 85% of that steel comes from recycled content. Molded pads and storage bins can be disassembled during a recycling process. The electric powered all-AC drive and lift systems improve energy efficiency, and the recyclable battery provides a zero-emission work environment for users.

Credits go to Crown’s James Kraimer, Markus Graf, Jesse Wershing and Jay Pollack and Formation’s Robert Henshaw, Phil Palermo, Russell Kroll and Mark Londborg.

The 145-pound (65.3 kg) LiftPod underwent trials in Australia, entered the US market in October 2008 and received other recognition as a Buildings magazine top 100 product and International Awards for Powered Access product of the year.

JLG makes model D2 in Sydney and model D3 in Changzhou, China.

Credits go to Geoff Campbell, JLG ProLift managing director; Jason Watson, JLG ProLift development co-ordinator; and five people with suppliers in Sydney suburbs, Dr Hugh Lithgow Stark of Stark Pty Ltd in Kareela, Frank Fornasari, Sandy McNeil and Oliver Kratzer with Nielsen Design Associates in Hunters Hill and Mark Armstrong of Blue Sky Design Group Pty Ltd in Mascot.

Campbell says: “The design work started in mid-2004 with the goal of developing technology and products to compete with ladders and small scaffolds. More than 500,000 people require treatment for ladder injuries each year in the US so JLG was keen to invest in a low-cost portable alternative to ladders.”

JLG Industries operates as the access equipment segment of publicly traded Oshkosh Corp of Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

The Industrial Designers Society of America in Dulles, Virginia organized the contest and disclosed the winners on 29 July. A panel of 20 designers and evaluators judged 1,631 IDEA entries from 37 countries to select the winners of 31 gold, 47 silver and 72 bronze awards. BusinessWeek magazine, Autodesk Inc and Target Corp were sponsors.

Through the society’s website, members of the public can choose from all IDEA winners for a People’s Choice award. An awards ceremony be held on  26 September at a conference in Miami Beach, Florida.
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Movers & Shakers
Irvine, CA, United States
Kazue Sasaki has succeeded Susumu (Sonny) Toyoda as president of Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing Inc. He is also now president of Toyota Industries North America Inc and director of the Toyota Material Handling USA Inc board of directors. Sasaki has over 20 years of management and engineering experience. He was senior managing officer of Toyota Industries Corp (TICO) and prior to that, he led TICO’s engine division.

Wiesbaden, Germany
KION Group has appointed Manfred Wennemer as a shareholder representative on the company’s supervisory board. Wennemer replaces Till Hufnagel, executive director at Goldman Sachs Capital Partners. From September 2009, he will also succeed Johannes Huth, head of Europe at KKR, as chairman of the supervisory board. Wennemer has 30 years’ experience in the manufacturing industry. From 2001 to 2008, he was CEO of Continental AG.

Cherryville, NC, United States
FleetNet America Inc has appointed Craig McDowell as forklift fleet manager. McDowell has over 20 years’ experience in the forklift industry ranging from sales to aftermarket development. He will be responsible for FleetNet’s Forklift Maintenance Management program.
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TICO’s equipment sales halve in first quarter
Aichi, Japan

Toyota Industries Corp (TICO)’s materials handling equipment sales for the first quarter of financial year 2010 have dropped by over 50% from the previous year’s corresponding quarter.
According to TICO’s first quarter results, the manufacturer sold 25,000 units in FY2010 - compared to 51,000 units in FY2009.
Net materials handling equipment sales for FY2010 totaled JPY103.5 billion (USD1.1 billion), compared to JPY183.7 billion (USD1.9 billion) for FY2009.

Manitex receives first crane orders
Bridgeview, IL, United States

Manitex International has accepted USD1.1 million in orders for its new 50155S crane equipped with a powered boom and single-piece jib.
The crane has been developed for the power line construction market and other high-reach applications.
The Manitex Liftking subsidiary manufactures a complete line of rough-terrain forklifts and other materials handling equipment.
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Crown shows secret, withholds details
New Bremen, OH, United States
A soon-to-be-introduced forklift line from Crown Equipment Corp receives stylish but operationally incorrect exposure on the 27 July cover of ESPN The Magazine.

Crown is withholding details about the new line but suggests the forklift design will bring new levels of performance and productivity to a market niche in which Crown has not competed previously.

The fantasy football league photographic image shows a Crown-branded propane-powered forklift and has generated comments on the Discussion Forum. As a result, News contacted several figures in the forklift safety training community for opinions. Their comments are excerpted below and posted now in their entirety on the Discussion Forum.

A crew from ESPN posed Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson on a pallet supported by the forklift, with Vikings fan Rocky Novak at the controls. The shoot with photographer Olugbenro Ogunsemore was held at the Vikings’ facility in Eden Prairie, Minnesota under the guidance of Siung Tjia, the magazine’s creative director.

As those in the materials handling industry know, standing on a forklift truck is a violation of US Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations, but the promotional photo focuses on the fantasy football league using the Crown-supplied forklift as a prop.

David Hoover, president of Forklift Training Systems in Newark, Ohio, comments: “Spending time on something minor like this distracts away from the real issues that kill forklift operators and pedestrians every day around the world. How about a cover on the fact that in the US more people are killed by forklifts than by tornados or by poisonous snakes each year? Now that is a story worth printing and a problem worth fixing.”

Rob Vetter, director of training with IVES Training & Compliance Group Inc of Blaine, Washington, observes: “The ‘stunt’ pulled by ESPN on this cover was presumably executed by professionals under controlled circumstances with all due considerations for safety taken. If it was not, then shame on ESPN.”

Danny Maron, owner and trainer with Ideal Forklift Training in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, remarks that the image is “a harmless photo shoot under controlled conditions” to get a point across, and the magazine’s mass audience does not care about the safety aspect. At the same time, the “message to professional trainers, experienced competent operators, current trainees and the up-and-coming operators is wrong”.

Circulation of ESPN The Magazine exceeds two million copies, according to a Magazine Publishers of America report. The biweekly magazine’s publisher, multimedia sports entertainment firm ESPN Inc of Bristol, Connecticut is 80% owned by a Walt Disney Co subsidiary and 20% by the Hearst Corp.

Crown says it will introduce “a new line of lift trucks that will be the first-ever Crown-designed and -built” later this year.
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Linfox wins major logistics contract
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Freight specialist Linfox Logistics has signed a contract worth up to AUD2 billion with food and beverage giant National Foods Limited.

The contract, which will create some 300 jobs, involves managing the company’s Australian national distribution, including distribution centre design and management, linehaul and local distribution, for the next 10 years.

“Linfox helped review National Foods’ Australian supply chain operations and developed a powerful supply chain solution that will establish a state-of-the-art distribution centre network and specialised delivery vehicle fleet,” says CEO Michael Byrne.
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Freight survey reveals growing NZ confidence
Auckland, New Zealand
A survey of New Zealand exporters by freight specialist DHL has revealed that despite the global financial crisis (GFC), NZ exporters are looking forward to a positive 12 months.

Around 60% of exporters believe their export orders will increase in the next 12 months, while 45% anticipate their profitability to increase, with 32% expecting their profitability to stay the same.

“Given the impact the GFC is having on international markets and some local sectors, it is encouraging to see that Kiwi exporters are looking toward a buoyant 12 months,” says Gary Edstein, senior vice president, Oceania, DHL Express.

Over half the exporters indicated that they anticipate the number of employees to remain the same, while 31% believe they will increase their staff levels.

While things are looking up for established exporters, the survey also revealed that 82% of respondents believe that the New Zealand government should provide a stimulus package for emerging exporters.

Looking ahead to the next five years, Australia ranks as the top export destination for the majority share of respondents (63%).

“Australia is a key market for New Zealand. Our respective governments have given some good indications about progressing closer economic relations recently, such as the trans-Tasman domestic flights, but we’re still waiting to see what else will come from these discussions,” says Edstein.
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Linde completes NSW installation
Arndell Park, New South Wales, Australia
Linde Material Handling completed delivery of over 80 forklifts to the Arndell Park facility of VersaCold in New South Wales last month.

The delivery, comprising counterbalance trucks, order pickers, pallet movers and trucks as well as battery changers, forms part of a national contract with VersaCold to supply some 400 forklifts to the company’s warehouses in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia ( News #415).

According to Shamus Johnston, Linde NSW sales supervisor, operator feedback since installation of the Linde equipment has been exceptional.

“The process took approximately four to six weeks from delivering the first piece of equipment on site to the last (in) mid-July. As a new supplier, the process consisted of operator training and sign off; installation of batteries and chargers; delivery and installation of equipment; and decommissioning of the old equipment – each step undertaken by model mix.”

He tells News that by rolling out the deliveries by model mix, the company was able to get the operators comfortable on each piece of equipment progressively.

“It also meant avoiding any major disruptions to the site productivity, particularly in the battery room as it wasn’t as simple as changing chargers and batteries one for one.

“We installed a complete fabricated charger rack to which all chargers were mounted. Once again, the battery room is set up by model mix. One of the major specifications we changed to provide better flexibility was to provide all order pickers and pallet movers with an interchangeable 480 Amp battery where previously their pickers and loaders had different batteries.”

In addition, Linde changed the entire operation from overhead crane battery changing to side battery change for all units. This has reduced battery changing time considerably and improved productivity and safety considerably.

The Arndell Park operation, which services major supermarket and dairy customers in Australia, comprises two warehouses, with a total holding capacity of around 25,000 pallets and average turnover of 8,500 pallets a week.
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Komatsu Forklift officially opens in Australia
Seven Hills, New South Wales, Australia
Komatsu Forklift Australia officially commenced operations in Australia this month. Previously known as Red Australia, the company was purchased in April this year by Komatsu Ltd, Japan.

With 11 branches throughout Australia, the company offers sales, hire, service and parts.

According to national sales and marketing manager Shaun O’Brien, the local market can expect a wider range of Komatsu equipment to be introduced, with a couple of product launches over the next few months.

He adds that the product range extends beyond forklifts to include PM truck-mounted cranes, Kevrek cranes and Baumann sideloaders.
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Less port-related traffic on roads
Auckland, New Zealand
There is less port-related traffic on local roads today than five years ago, according to new research released by Ports of Auckland.

According to MD Jens Madsen, the percentage of trucks using local arterials in the eastern suburbs to reach the port had reduced from 17% in 2004 to 7%, thanks primarily to the Grafton Gully and Central Motorway Junction developments.

He adds the number of trucks on Kepa Road, a well-known shortcut, had reduced by 120 trucks per day.

“A lot of investment has gone into Auckland’s roads in recent years and this research shows that it is paying off – for the community and for the business sector.”

Madsen says the research sets to rest a myth that congestion on Auckland’s road network would constrain long-term growth at the port.

“By 2021, if key Auckland road projects proceed, congestion on key freight routes servicing the port will not be significantly worse than today.”

However, he notes that road transport could not work effectively in isolation from other transport modes.

“We need better integration between road, rail, air and shipping. The global trend to hub-and-spoke shipping will drive increased volumes on road and rail, as well as coastal shipping. It is likely that direct international shipping services to the smaller regional ports will decrease.”

The company is developing its Wiri Inland Port, which is near SH1, SH20 and Auckland International Airport, as an intermodal freight hub.

A rail exchange at the inland port is under construction and will be completed by the end of 2009.

“Ultimately, we believe trucking companies will see benefits in basing their transport networks off the inland port as opposed to the seaport.

“We also believe that there is an opportunity for rail to play a much larger role in freight transport, both in the Auckland region and nationally.”
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Container growth at Port Botany
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Strong export growth has helped Sydney Ports record its eighth consecutive year of container trade increases.

“Latest trade figures for Port Botany show full container exports grew by 14.9% in the 2008/09 financial year,” says CEO Grant Gilfillan.

The higher exports of timber, cereals, machinery and transport equipment have been the primary drivers of the growth.

“The depreciation of the Australian dollar in the first half of the financial year also improved the competitive position of NSW firms which, in turn, has contributed to the growth in exports.

“Despite the global economic downturn, total container trade through Port Botany, including imports, reached a record 1.784 million TEUs, up 0.3% compared to the previous financial year,” says Gilfillan.

This included a record monthly throughput of 168,000 TEUs for November 2008.

Full container exports to a number of countries have increased by more than 15%. These include: China (up 31.1%), Korea (18.3%), Malaysia (39.6 %), Singapore (35.4%), Vietnam (75.1%), UAE (16.9%) and Papua New Guinea (21.3%).

While the first six months of the financial year showed strong overall container trade growth, the second half of the financial year reflects the influence of the global economic slowdown.

“The global slowdown will still pose a challenge for Sydney over the next 12 months, but with the increased investment in infrastructure such as the AUD1 billion Port Botany expansion, Sydney Ports will be well placed to take advantage once the market improves,” says Gilfillan.

“Total trade for the financial year to 30 June 2009 was 27.8 million mass tonnes ― a decrease of 4.7% compared to the same period last year.

“This was mainly as a result of the cessation of the motor vehicle trade through Glebe Island in November 2008 and the reduction in crude oil imports,” comments Gilfillan.
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Ningbo Ruyi Introduces CDD series High Lift Electric Stackers
To meet the market challenges, Ningbo Ruyi has made a determined effort to concentrate on product innovation, giving users appropriate solutions.

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
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WE-LIFT release some popular forklift spare parts
WE-LIFT Forklift Parts Co., Ltd is the leading forklift spare parts supplier in China. We supply many types of fast moving forklift parts such as forks, side shifters, fork positioners, seats, split rims, integral rims, solid tyres, pneumatic tyres, mast rollers, chain rollers, side rollers, water pumps, lamps, chains, fork extensions, drum clamps, discs, plates and torque converters.

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
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CoGri Group Aced Down Under
Goodman commissioned the CoGri Group to upgrade their existing warehouse located in Moorebank, approximately 30km from Sydney, Australia’s Kingsford Smith International Airport. In early 2008 Goodman decided to convert the warehouse to Very Narrow Aisle (VNA) racking to meet the requirements of a new client, IKEA, an international well known home products giant that distributes its products through its retail outlets. CoGri Group has completed other floor upgrading projects for IKEA in Spain and Greece in recent years.

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
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Aussie Success Ready To Spread Their Wings - Warehouse Safety Solutions
Whilst most companies in Australia are suffering from the economic slow down, Warehouse Safety Solutions (WSS) is experiencing a huge growth spurt. WSS has pedestrian safety as their core focus and this has given their customers the confidence to know that WSS have their best interests at heart.

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
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Hoist Liftruck introduces its pneumatic redesign
The P‐Series now features a modular design for more efficient containerization and serviceability. Bedford Park, Illinois ‐ July 08, 2009 – Hoist Liftruck unveiled a redesign of its P‐Series pneumatic forklift line, which was based on the idea behind its new ECH Series empty container handlers.

Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.
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If it's got to be EX - It's got to be a RICO
RICO's hazardous products division continues to be the leading manufacturer of Explosion Proof forklifts in the North America.

Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.
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FLTA wants to recognise industry’s best
Alton, United Kingdom
It’s that time of the year again when the Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA) invites UK companies to enter their products or services for its 2010 Awards for Excellence.

Click here for the full Fork Talk feature.
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Richard Shore: Precaution is better than cure
London, United Kingdom
Anyone who has ever had involvement with health and safety legislation will have come across the term ‘reasonably practicable’, but what does it mean and how can employers make sure that the training they provide their employees fulfils the definition?

Click here for the full Safety First feature, including pictures.
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Industry Profile: Bolzoni Auramo
Piacenza, Italy
Bolzoni-Auramo is planning to release a new model clamp later this year.

Click here to read the full Profile.
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3 of 5,120 listings
Clark - DCY 40- >25 years
Nijkerk, Netherlands
Taylor - TLS900 - 2003
Montebello, California, United States
Linde - R14 - 1997
Silverwater, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

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In the Discussion Forums

"The rumour I heard is Nacco will use Yale for class I thru III and Hyster for IV and V and big trucks. They will then take the stronger dealer in the territory (either Hyster or Yale) and give hem both lines. If this is what Nacco has planned, I can only IMAGINE the lawsuits that will follow. Anyone remember the MCFA mess it had with its Mitsu Dealers?????? "
Maven, United States

"For small companies, your best bet is to look for add-on modules from the software company that makes your accounting software OR 3rd party add-on products that have interfaces to your accounting software."
InventoryOps, United States

"I have never heard of anyone developing shoulder strain from using steering forklifts, especially how easy they turn and our lifts have spinner knobs, which in my opinion makes it that much easier."
TC17, United States

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1. Account Manager - Full time
United States, Nashville

2. Road Service Technician - Full time
United States, Savannah

3. Sales Rep - Full time
United States, Carlisle

4. Operations Manager - Full time
United States, Louisville, KY 40299


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1. Service/Parts - Full time
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Fast Facts

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Editorial Calendar 2008

Editorial Calendar 2009

Rough Terrain forklifts
Safety products in MH
Forklift Market in Canada
Tow trucks
Forklift Market in the United Kingdom
Fleet & Asset management
Narrow Aisle forklifts
Industrial tyres/wheels
Forklift batteries and power solutions
Side loaders
Explosion-proof forklifts
Forklift Market in India


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