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  Dear reader,
WELCOME TO FORKLIFTACTION.COM, MATERIALS HANDLING ONLINE.
This is issue #180 - 21 October 2004 of the weekly newsletter for industry professionals.


IN THE SPOTLIGHT
“If sex sells, then the Australian forklift industry should learn some valuable lessons from The Safety Show in Sydney last week.”

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IN THIS ISSUE WELCOME

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INSIDE FORKLIFTACTION.COMBack To Top

 
Forkliftaction.com helps you plan your advertising by providing a calendar of editorial features appearing in Forkliftaction.com News in the coming months.
Features planned are:
October: Weighing Systems for Forklifts - October 14, October 28
November: Machinery Storage & Transportation - November 4, November 18
December: Materials Handling in South America - December 2, December 16
January 2005: Manual Materials Handling Equipment - January 6, January 20
February 2005: Telescopic Handling Equipment - February 3, February 17
March 2005: Financing Your Forklift Options - March 3, March 17
April 2005: Future Markets - April 7, April 21
Editorial features are an excellent way for your company to share the spotlight of these features.
If your company operates in these sectors, don’t miss this rare opportunity to access the world’s materials handling decision-makers.
Contact us for more information.
 


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NEWS STORIESBack To Top


Cascade-Falkenroth: the smoke clears
PORTLAND, OR, United States


Cascade Corporation has bought troubled German attachments manufacturer Falkenroth Fördertechnik Gmbh & Co for EUR3.8 million (USD4.6 million).

The acquisition comes after months of negotiations between the two companies, which started when Cascade announced in September that it was in talks with Falkenroth about a possible acquisition (Forkliftaction.com News #173).

Early this month, the companies entered official negotiations (Forkliftaction.com News #178), and Cascade announced the deal was finalised on October 14.

Cascade management would not discuss details of Falkenroth, post-acquisition, but analysts contacted by Forkliftaction.com News said the purchase signified the elimination of a competitor, and was “Cascade’s style”.

One analyst, who requested anonymity, said the company, which is very dominant in its home US market, was accelerating its growth in Europe through acquisitions in a bid to increase market share there.

“It’s quite mysterious, really”, the analyst said, “The company recently bought another fork manufacturer, FEMA, so I don’t really know why they bothered”.

“Falkenroth was a long-established family company with a good reputation, but they were old-fashioned; their products weren’t technically superior to anything else on the market.”

“Considering they already have FEMA, and with their recent investments in forklift manufacturing in China, it’s difficult to understand the strategy.”

The analyst said the Falkenroth brand would probably not disappear, as Cascade had benefited from the leverage of established brands.

“Cascade bought Roncari, and maintained the brand, with great success (Forkliftaction.com News #131),” he said.

“If you order a Roncari attachment today, you call the Roncari number, the product arrives with Roncari branding, and you receive a Roncari invoice – and it works.”
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Linde denies BOC merger claims
WIESBADEN, Germany


Forklift maker Linde AG has denied rumours it is considering a EUR11 billion merger of its industrial gases division with the BOC Group.

Speculation arose after a report appeared in the UK’s Sunday Times on October 17 claiming Linde chief executive Wolfgang Reitzle had met with BOC chief executive Tony Isaac for informal discussions about a merger.

“A merger of the companies’ gas businesses would leave Reitzle to concentrate on Linde’s forklift manufacturing operation and create a larger manufacturer of a broader range of industrial products,” one report said.

Linde AG corporate centre head of press, Uwe Wolfinger, told Forkliftaction.com News the suggestions were “pure speculation without any basis”.

“We deny the article. Nothing to add,” he said.

Newspapers reported BOC would not comment on the situation, but analysts said any move would “make sense” for both companies.

Despite the companies’ denial that they are merging, investors bristled at the suggestion, and both companies’ stock spiked; Linde gaining 1.3 per cent and BOC gaining 1.4 per cent.
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Kalmar seals 14-forklift Ford deal
STOCKHOLM, Sweden


Kalmar has received an order from Ford for 14 new compact ECD70-6C electric forklifts, adding to the company’s existing fleet of 40 Kalmar forklifts.

The new machines will enter service in the new year at Ford’s sites in Valencia and Cologne, Germany. Several modifications were made to the forklifts to meet Ford’s requirements, said Kalmar Industrial Systems sales and marketing vice-president Mikael Rietz.

Ford, a Kalmar customer since 1989, needed a compact machine for narrow aisles, so Kalmar, using special tyres and a lead-filled counterweight, reduced the machines’ overall length by 45cm. Flashing reverse lights, reverse cameras and ultrasound sensors were also added.

There was a great demand for electric forklifts in environments were emissions requirements were stringent, such as in indoor locations, Rietz said. Kalmar would not reveal the value of the contract.

“We see clear growth potential for electric trucks, growth that will undoubtedly be spurred on by the launch of new models. Kalmar is particularly strong with larger trucks,” he said.

“Demand is coming primarily from the warehouse handling sector where electric trucks are (preferred) due to their elimination of exhaust emissions and noise.”

Ford uses Kalmar forklifts for internal transportation in five European factories, and has a fleet of 40 Kalmar electric forklifts.
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Palfinger moves into truck-mounted work platforms
VIENNA, Austria


Austrian portable forklift manufacturer, Palfinger AG, has acquired Bison stematic, the German leader in truck-mounted aerial work platforms.

The move represents a major shift in focus for Palfinger which, with the addition of Bison’s EUR13 million (USD16 million) annual sales, gives the company the potential to reach the top of the European market.

Palfinger released its own ACCESS truck-mounted platform last year, so management is keen to quickly integrate the newly-acquired business.

In a detailed report released by the company, Palfinger said Bison would operate as Bison Palfinger GmbH, subsidiary to Palfinger Europe GmbH.

The European volume market is estimated at about EUR300 million (USD379 million), with predicted annual growth of 3 per cent. The largest markets for truck-mounted aerial work platforms are France, Germany, the UK, Italy and Spain.
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Watts, Continental link up in tyre deal
LYDNEY, United Kingdom


Watts Industrial Tyres Plc has signed an agreement with Continental AG to supply solid industrial tyres to Continental’s Industrial Tyre business unit.

The tyres will be manufactured to Continental’s specifications at Eu-Retec (Pvt) Ltd in Sri Lanka, which Watts took a 50 per cent stake in this year. Continental will use the Sri Lankan product to develop its presence in the US and Asia.

No financial details of the partnership, which was signed on September 30, were revealed.

Watts Industrial Tyres has been manufacturing solid industrial tyres through joint ventures in China and Sri Lanka for several years, and the Eu-Retec investment means Watts can benefit from the low production costs, while ensuring that production does not depend on one region.

Watts managing director Doug Pearson said: “We are delighted to be working with Continental and this agreement will ensure that our new Sri Lankan facility can benefit from the economies of scale that this volume will provide.”

Company chairman John Thurston said Watts had transformed its business model in recent years.

“This has allowed us to cooperate with Continental in this way. Supply chain agreements between competitors are not unusual in other industries, and it is a trend that we are keen to develop,” he said.
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Event review: Australia on show at safety exhibition
SYDNEY, Australia


If sex sells, then the Australian forklift industry should have learned some valuable lessons at The Safety Show at Sydney’s Olympic Park last week.

Free lollies and firm handshakes came a distant second to the scantily-clad “product experts” flogging safety belts, boots, glasses or whatever else to their glassy-eyed, almost entirely male, funnily enough, “prospects”.

So is the forklift world missing something, or are materials handling products so interesting on their own that they don’t need eye candy to attract attention? Personally, I think the latter.

According to the show organisers, more than 8000 risk, insurance, safety and trade professionals attended the three-day show, which ran from October 13-15. Last year’s show drew 5500 visitors.

The Safety Show is the Australian industry’s annual event, and features all manner of manufacturers debuting the latest in injury reduction, data management and other safety products.

Forklift companies were well represented among the 350-odd exhibitors at the show. Crown, Mitsubishi and Sumi, notable absentees from the recent Matex 2004 (Forkliftaction.com News #161), joined Toyota and Jungheinrich among the manufacturers represented, and several businesses supplying components, auxiliary and safety systems added to the mix.

Crown Equipment Australia marketing manager Craig Kenchington, who replaced Glenn Pulley earlier this year, said the Safety Show was Crown’s exhibition of choice.

“There are plenty of related events we could attend throughout the year, but this one represents the most cost-effective for us,” he said. “It’s also paid really great dividends in the past, so we’ll keep coming back as long as it does.”

Crown’s stand was focused on the company’s Wave lift truck, with a moving display. The key to attracting show visitors was creating a visual spectacle, Kenchington said.

“Every so often, the truck starts beeping and lifts up to its full height and down again – it’s guaranteed to turn heads, if not draw a crowd,” he said.

“A show like this is a great way for us to access OHS managers shopping with the annual budget – forklifts play a big role in workplace safety, so our machines get a lot of attention and positive enquiries.”

Safety shows, or materials handling-related shows are a good opportunity for forklift makers to market to their customers in a subliminal way.

“OHS professionals are looking for products to solve a specific problem, or correct a situation, and a forum like this allows them to browse around without the pressure of walking into a forklift dealership,” Kenchington said.

Elliott Bichara, Sydney area manager with MLA Holdings Pty Ltd, which supplies Mitsubishi forklifts in Australia, said it was the first time his company had exhibited at the show.

“We’re here sampling what the show can offer. We’ve had a lot of people through the stand this week, asking questions and having a close look at our trucks,” he said.

“The traffic flow through the materials handling section has been just acceptable, but we’ll analyse the costs and benefits and see how successful the show was for us.”

Rob Williams, business development manager with TASK Australia, the OSKO factory dealer of the Sumi range of battery-electric trucks, said the 2004 event was “20 per cent” better than last year’s.

“We judge the success of shows like this on the number of people who come to us with genuine, actionable enquiries, and this year has been very good for us,” he said.

“Friday was our busiest day, strangely, as it was the last day of the show. It’s an information supermarket for safety professionals, and this is where you need to be if you want to access that market.”
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Raymond Reach-Fork marks 50th birthday
GREENE, NY, United States


Raymond Corporation has marked 50 years of producing its Reach-Fork truck, introduced in the 1950s as a space-saving innovation for warehousing.

Raymond believes the then-new development led to “an era of continuous improvements in storage space efficiency and warehouse productivity”.

Raymond president and chief executive Jim Malvaso said the success of the truck stemmed from listening to customers’ needs and using innovations to develop better methods.

“We are working with developers of radio frequency identification (RFID), fuel cells and other emerging technologies to ensure our trucks can incorporate these innovations as they become practical, dependable and commercially available,” he said.

“Customers count on us for the most advanced, reliable, cost-efficient lift trucks. To meet these expectations, Raymond invests heavily in research and development, and in reliability engineering,” Malvaso added.
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Grendia booming after 12 months in Australia
SYDNEY, Australia


Mitsubishi’s “clean” new Grendia forklift has been a huge hit in Australia, according to Australian importer and marketer, MLA Holdings.

MLA general manager Charles Foo told Forkliftaction.com News that customers in Australia had responded well to the new machine after almost 12 months on the market.

The Grendia is the first mainstream collaboration between Nissan and Mitsubishi since the companies formed an alliance in 2000. The forklift was launched onto the world market in June 2003, and the first units arrived in Australia in November.

Mitsubishi released the Grendia and Nissan launched the Agres, each sitting comfortably within the stringent, future US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations, and feature complex emissions control systems which reduce the production of noxious gases by 90 per cent (Forkliftaction.com News #113).

While Foo would not reveal actual sales figures, he said MLA had underestimated the popularity of the forklift. Customers had responded well to the truck’s reliability and up to 20 per cent fuel savings over rival LP gas forklifts.

“Sales have taken off more than we expected them to,” he said. “This year we sold out of our supply two months in a row. That was in June and July – customers were waiting 12 weeks for their forklift at the peak of it.”

More generally, Foo said MLA Holdings, which also sells Fantuzzi container handlers and Shinko electric forklifts, had performed well in 2004.

“We don’t go out there shooting for market share; our focus is purely on building relationships with our customers and selling forklifts, and in that respect, we are very pleased with our performance this year,” he added.
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Forklift driver takes out Idol crown
KITCHENER, Canada


A Guelph forklift driver has been crowned Oktoberfest Idol by the judges at Canada’s annual beer festival.

Jessica Grieve, a 24-year-old shipper and receiver at an oil burner company, wowed the judges and the crowd with her booming renditions of Carole King and Celine Dion classics.

Of the field of 25, Grieve made it to the three-singer shortlist, but trounced the competition with her singing, according to a Kitchener-Waterloo Record report.

“I don't have a lot of hair on my arms but what little I have stands up on end when you sing,” said judge Brian Bourke, a radio personality. “(Your voice) makes goose pimples on my arm," said children's entertainer Erick Traplin, adding, “I can't even talk.”

As Oktoberfest Idol, Grieve will ride on top of a Mustang convertible in the Thanksgiving parade, and she will perform later. But she’s very realistic about whether the win will change her life.

“I'll have to get up at six o'clock tomorrow morning. Lack of sleep, that’s it,” she said. “Can I keep the car?”
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ADVERTISEMENT

New air-suspended seat from EBLO

World famous seat maker EBLO has released the new AIRSUSPENSION forklift seat. This comfortable, low-profile seat can be fitted to all forklifts, including small forklifts because of its low height (just 16cm!!). The seat is equipped with a five-position lumbar regulation and a fully adjustable backrest. There are various options available, including a retractable seat belt, adjustable armrests or heating elements. Because of the air suspension, the seat can be very easily adjusted and give a smooth ride for both heavy and light weight drivers.

See www.eblo.nl, send an email to info@eblo.nl or call +31 (180) 512 866.
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FORK TALKBack To Top

 

FLTA’S 2ND SAFETY CONFERENCE A SUCCESS
ALTON, United Kingdom


The Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA) has claimed a victory over workplace accidents after the smooth and successful execution of its 2nd Annual Safety Conference at Warwick University.

FLTA chairman Richard Baxter said the conference had aimed to help forklift users deal with the plethora of safety issues confronting them every day.

“It’s little wonder that end users need help and advice given the breadth, depth and variety of issues facing forklift owners,” he said.

The event was in part the answer to a call from end users for help in forklift safety, and the conference presented “practical solutions to real end user problems, set up at the request of real end users.”

The extensive conference program covered many aspects of forklift safety and the safe handling of specific products and materials.

Jungheinrich UK stressed the importance of thorough workplace safety surveys. A thorough survey, they said, made it possible to decide what equipment should be chosen and what practices should be employed to avoid or minimise identified risks.

Brigade Electronics said statistics showed 43 per cent of serious forklift accidents involved reversing forklifts striking pedestrians. The company introduced delegates at the conference to ‘broadband’ – multi-frequency – sound, which tells pedestrians instantly and unambiguously, the accurate location of the alarm’s source.

CMP Batteries warned and advised visitors about the risks of AC and DC power, and the manual handling of batteries and chemicals within, produced by or stored for use in the battery.

Calor Gas demonstrated best practice in the storage and use of LPG, and gave examples of fire precautions and the need for appropriate protective equipment and first aid.

“With the information they have gained here, delegates will be able to start implementing improved safety measures as soon as they return to their workplaces,” said FLTA chief executive David Ellison.

“At the same time, the presentations and the delegates’ reactions have raised further questions. As always, we are committed to tackling every key safety issue head on, and what we've discussed today will help to shape our work over the coming months,” he added.


 


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MEDIA RELEASESBack To Top


1. Clark establishes new European organisation

Effective September 1st, 2004, Clark Europe GmbH was founded in Duisburg, Germany, which means Clark – the inventor of the forklift truck some 90 years ago – is “back in Europe” again. This is a milestone in Clark’s strategy of strengthening its position in major global markets.

In order to be able to fulfil the demand of the markets, the capacity of Clark’s modern factory in Changwon, Korea, will be increased. In 2004, output will be roughly 8,000 forklifts, but by 2006, Changwon will produce 12,000 machines. Moreover, the beginning of 2005 will see a new Clark factory start production in...

Clark Europe GmbH
Mr Egon Strehl
Managing Director
info-europe@clarkmheu.com
+49 2065 9617-0

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
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2. Cascade 38F Paper roll clamp fills need for newspapers and printers

Cascade Corporation introduces the 38F Paper Roll Clamp, designed for printers and newspaper publishers. The 38F offers a capacity of 3,800 lbs for rolls up to 51 inches in diameter, and complements Cascade’s 25F and 45F models for handling small and medium-size rolls.

This new roll clamp features a very thin arm profile and smooth arm contour, and is available with split pads for both the long and short arm. The 38F can be ordered with all the options of Cascade’s popular 45F clamp, including a Split Arm, Electronic Rotational Control and Adjustable Bumper, as well as a variety of contact...

For more information about the 38F Paper Roll Clamp and other Cascade products, go to www.cascorp.com or call 800 CASCADE (227-2233).

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
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YOUR EXTRAS
IN THE DISCUSSION FORUMS

UPCOMING EVENTS

TENDERS

JOB VACANCIES

FAST FACTS



In the Discussion Forums
Share your Linde experience!
"Linde is slow to gain acceptance in the US due to its high price. I've worked for Linde dealers and I think this forklift is much like a motorcycle: great "up until the point of impact". Linde is OK until you need a repair."
wayne_c, Canada

Prevention is better than cure...
"If you need a system to stop your forklift rolling over, shouldn't you be concerned about how your operators are driving? If they need a system to keep a forklift on four wheels they shouldn't be driving. Train the operator to drive - don't modify the truck to fit unsafe driving practices."
scottp, United States

Can you advise?
"I'm in the market for new units (1.8 to 3.5 ton) and am torn between Hyster XM units and the new 'N' series Mitsubishis. I am battling to get hold of a Hyster spec sheet for direct comparisons and would appreciate some opinions on this."
craigb, South Africa

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Upcoming Events
1. Interlog Winter 2005
St. Petersburg, FL, United States
January 25th - January 28th

2. ICHCA Luncheon - South Australia
West lakes SA, Australia
6th October 2004

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Tenders
1. Storage Bin Shelf Boxes
New Cumberland, PA, United States
Closing: 27 October 2004
Contract: SP3100-05-T-0054

2. Rental Forklift - Closes Friday
Unknown, Canada
Closing: 22 October 2004
Contract: 6038-04-3366

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Jobs
1. Sales Manager - Full time
Indianapolis, United States

2. Narrow Aisle Division Director - Full time
Indianapolis, United States

3. Sales Representative - Full time
Melbourne Sth Eastern Suburbs, Australia

4. Technical Sales Representative X 2 - Full time
Syndey & Brisbane, Australia

5. Forklift technician - Full time
George Town, Cayman Islands

6. Service Technician - Full time
Pittsburgh, PA & Pennsauken, NJ, United States

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Jobs >>

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Fast Facts
1. Clark establishes new European organisation

2. Toyota has launched a large forklift range, suitable for stevedoring and other heavy applications. The 11-model 4-Series range includes machines up to 24-tonnes payload.

3. Cascade 38F Paper roll clamp fills need for newspapers and printers

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News >>

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