This is issue #60 - 06 June 2002 of your personal newsletter.
The independent, global newsletter for industry professionals.
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IN THIS ISSUE:
1. PARTEK, KONECRANES SCRAP MERGER PLANS
2. KALMAR'S AUTOMATED CONTAINER TERMINAL DEBUTS IN AUSTRALIA
3. QUAY CRANES GO INTO SERVICE AT XIAMEN
4. KALMAR RESTRUCTURE SEES WORKERS, LOCATIONS CUT
5. MOVERS & SHAKERS
6. CAPTION COMPETITION
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1.PARTEK, KONECRANES SCRAP MERGER PLANS
PARAINEN, Finland Partek Corporation and KCI Konecranes have abandoned what could have been the biggest materials handling merger in recent years.
The two companies had announced on May 21 that they would "form a major engineering company that would be a global leader in materials handling". But two days later they said the merger would not go ahead.
On May 20, Kone Corporation, KCI's parent, had announced it had offered to buy the State of Finland's 30.2 percent share in Partek. Partek supported the plan, and the deal was to have been finalised at extraordinary general meetings of both companies.
But Partek, on May 23, released this statement: "KCI Konecranes has received written confirmation that Kone Corporation will not support the merger plan ... There are no possibilities for the merger to be completed under the prevailing circumstances. As a result ... KCI Konecranes and Partek have decided to terminate the merger plan."
KCI president and chief executive Stig Gustavson said it was "business as usual" and the aborted merger would not impact on KCI's future.
"The investigatory phase of the merger has been going on for some time. We did not stop pursuing our normal activities because of this deal. Bolt-on acquisitions are forthcoming, and our strategy of strong organic growth, combined with selected acquisitions, has not been held back at all," he said.
Forkliftaction.com News could not contact Partek before publication deadline.
2.KALMAR'S AUTOMATED CONTAINER TERMINAL DEBUTS IN AUSTRALIA
BRISBANE, Australia In a collaborative development by Kalmar Industries and Patrick Stevedores, the world's first automated straddle carriers will start operating at Brisbane's Fisherman Islands container terminal in the next three months.
Kalmar straddle carriers vice-president Ilkka Annala said the straddles would be unmanned, relying on radar, inertia navigation and satellite positioning technology to roam around the terminal, directed by a central management system.
Five Kalmar straddles would enter service initially, operating between ship-to-shore cranes and container stacks. Unmanned straddles could potentially handle between 200,000 and 300,000 TEUs each year at the Brisbane terminal.
"The automated straddle has a capacity equal to a conventional straddle, achieving a duty cycle equivalent to or exceeding that of a manned vehicle, and operates in the same environmental conditions as a manned vehicle. These were our initial goals and we have achieved (them) all," Mr Annala said.
Kalmar's involvement has been in developing control systems that move, brake and steer the straddles, building systems that ensure containers are placed correctly, and refining the capabilities of sensors for container detection and safety systems. Patrick has concentrated on the tasking and traffic management systems, and navigational positioning using radar, lasers and satellite positioning.
The automated terminal is a human exclusion zone, a Kalmar statement said. Reefer and road interchanges are strictly controlled, so if someone needs to monitor a reefer container, straddles cannot enter the reefer area at the same time.
The only place where humans control the straddle is the truck grid, where the machines are controlled remotely. Trucks reverse onto the grid, where the driver leaves the truck and closes a gate behind the truck. Only then can straddles enter through another gate to pick up containers.
The straddles are fitted with anti-collision lasers and bumpers. The machine stops if anything comes within a specified distance, or if it collides with anything.
Mr Annala said automating straddles was first considered in the early 1990s when Kalmar (then Valmet) straddles handling steel coils in the Netherlands were successfully automated. But it was not until 1997 that automation became a possibility for container terminals.
"We learned that, independently, Patrick had begun to explore terminal automation, focusing on navigation and traffic management. We quickly agreed to join forces to develop a fully-automated straddle carrier port," he said.
3.QUAY CRANES GO INTO SERVICE AT XIAMEN
XIAMEN, China Xiamen International Container Terminals (XICT) has commissioned two post-panamax quay cranes for its Hutchison Delta Ports (HDP) company.
HDP general manager Alfred Leung said the new cranes would accommodate the operational needs of a fourth berth, which added an additional 140-metre quay and a 78,000-square-metre container yard at XICT.
The increase in facilities demonstrated HDP's confidence in Xiamen's hub-port development, Mr Leung said. The two quay cranes were manufactured by Shanghai Port Machinery Plant. Each crane has a 52-metre (18 row) wide outreach and a 41-tonne capacity.
Together with a previous delivery of five rubber-tyred-gantries last December, the new quay cranes enhance XICT's capacity by 40 percent.
4.KALMAR RESTRUCTURE SEES WORKERS, LOCATIONS CUT
LJGUNBY, Sweden Kalmar Industries is being restructured to increase its competitiveness, and has said there will be "personnel implications" relating to ramping up the company's efficiency worldwide.
Under the plans, announced this month, every Kalmar product will have a product supply centre, which will be responsible for customer-driven product development, marketing and production. Kalmar's range remains unchanged.
The five largest centres will be in Tampere, Finland, (straddles, rubber-tyred gantries and four-wheel-drive terminal tractors), Lidhult, Sweden (reach stackers and container handlers), Ljungby, Sweden (forklifts), Rotterdam, the Netherlands (ship-to-shore cranes and RMG-cranes), and Kansas, USA, (terminal tractors). Kalmar's terminal tractor plant in Texas, USA, will close this year, with the Tampere and Shanghai plants taking over production.
5.MOVERS & SHAKERS
HELSINKI, Finland BERGSTROM TAKES PARTEK'S TOP JOB
HELSINKI, Finland -- Partek senior executive vice-president Carl-Gustaf Bergstrm has been appointed president and acting chief executive following the sudden departure of Christoffer Taxell. A company statement said Mr Taxell had "drawn his conclusions" about the failure of Partek's merger with KCI Konecranes. "Taxell has, under difficult circumstances, striven for solutions concerning the company that are as favourable as possible for all shareholders," Partek said in a statement.
OSTERMAN APPOINTED CASCADE CHAIRMAN
PORTLAND, USA -- The board of Cascade Corporation has elected James S Osterman, who was already a company director, as chairman of the attachments giant. Mr Osterman replaces Greg Kubicek, who did not stand for re-election. Mr Osterman has served on the Cascade board since 1994.
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