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WELCOME TO FORKLIFTACTION.COM, MATERIALS HANDLING ONLINE.
This is issue #256 - 20 April 2006 of the weekly newsletter for industry professionals.
“Doosan Infracore reveals high ambition.”
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The forklift market in China
China Industrial Truck Association (CITA) managing director Su Enyi has said forklift sales for foreign companies grew more than Chinese companies in 2005. Forkliftaction.com News reporter Christine Liew speaks to three foreign forklift manufacturers about the Chinese market. Read more
TruPar, Solideal partner on GM tyre deal
MADISON HEIGHTS, MI, United States
TruPar America Inc and a unit of Luxembourg-based Solideal International SA have won a five-year global contract to supply General Motors Corp (GM) with replacement tyres for forklifts , internal transport vehicles and other mobile equipment.
Tom McDonnell, president and owner of Madison Heights-based TruPar, said: “For years, Monarch had the [GM replacement] contract for tyres. We partnered with Solideal Tire Inc and got the global tyre contract.” Terms were not disclosed.
Previously, GM had purchased Monarch-brand products from the industrial tyre segment of Sweden-based Trelleborg AB’s wheel systems business. Trelleborg acquired Monarch, of Hartville, Ohio, USA, in 1991.
McDonnell said the GM tyre deal should generate 2006 sales of USD1.5 million for the TruPar-Solideal partnership.
Rusty Ellis, national accounts manager with Solideal Tire Inc, in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, said: “Solideal is 22 years old and one of the largest replacement tyre manufacturers in the world.”
He said Solideal was manufacturing solid rubber and industrial pneumatic rubber tyres for GM in Sri Lanka and special-use polyurethane tyres in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. “Polyurethane works better for certain forklifts because of load-lifting capacity” and heat-dissipation requirements when running extremely heavy or mostly empty loads with heavy counterweights.
While it focuses on the aftermarket, Solideal sells original equipment tyres to the USA forklift divisions of Komatsu Ltd and Nissan Motor Co Ltd and several European original equipment manufacturers, including Melroe Co for its Bobcat skid-steer loaders.
On April 11, Paul Gaines joined Solideal Tire as president. The US operation also supplies tyres in other north American countries through affiliated companies Solideal Canada and Solideal de Mexico.
In a separate move, GM extended TruPar’s exclusive contract for non-warranty mobile equipment items in the USA to five years, concurrent with the global tyre pact.
Effective from September 2004, TruPar had obtained the GM contract for three years with a two-year option. TruPar supplies replacement parts for 10,000 pieces of GM mobile equipment, including 7,000 forklifts, operating at more than 60 GM manufacturing, fabrication-stamping and spare parts facilities in the USA.
GM formerly sourced the items from Hyster Co, of Greenville, North Carolina, USA. Hyster, a unit of Nacco Industries Inc, manufactures and supplies GM with original equipment forklifts and parts.
TruPar had won GM contracts to supply non-warranty mobile equipment parts in the USA for Yale, Allis-Chalmers and Clark forklifts in 1996-1997 and a large blanket pact for 20,000 line items in 1997.
TruPar had 2005 sales of USD20 million, of which GM accounted for about 60 per cent, McDonnell said.
Last September, TruPar moved its corporate office to Madison Heights from Bentleyville, Pennsylvania, to get closer to GM’s headquarters. TruPar now employs 25 people in Michigan and 20 in Pennsylvania.
Visa delays affect trade show business
MILWAUKEE, WI, United States
Overseas businessmen have said they would never come to the US again after receiving rude treatment from visa processing officials, a trade association told a US congressional hearing this month.
Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) president Dennis Slater testified at a hearing of the House Committee on Government Reform that focused on the business impact of visa-approval delays and made recommendations for reform.
Slater encouraged the US government to implement more business-friendly policies to encourage overseas customers to the US to buy US-made products. AEM operates some of the largest trade expos in the US, like the CONEXPO-CON/AGG show and the ICUEE-The Demo Expo.
“Our international attendance at recent shows would have been much higher, but many qualified business prospects encountered significant problems obtaining visas.
“Some became so discouraged over delays and perceived rude treatment that they dropped out of the process. They told us they would never come to the US again to spend their money but would go to trade shows in Europe or Asia instead,” Slater said.
AEM’s recommendations to the House Committee included differentiating business visa applicants from general ones and implementing more time-saving processes for frequent international business visitors.
Slater said small and medium sized exhibitors at AEM-run exhibitions were particularly affected by visa delays.
“It’s not feasible for smaller companies to ship a piece of equipment overseas for a pre-purchase inspection or fly in many potential customers themselves,” he said.
There was a focus among AEM members to attract Chinese and Indian customers to its exhibitions, Slater told the House Committee. Despite efforts by AEM staff in the US and China to facilitate the visa application process, potential show visitors still encountered problems.
The AEM suggested more staff be trained to process the high number of applicants and applicants be given better preparation for visa interviews.
Doosan opens up on ambition
Doosan Infracore has singled out the European market as part of its strategy to be ranked the world’s fifth highest selling forklift manufacturer by 2010.
Daniel Vanhemelrijck, sales and marketing manager of Doosan Infracore Europe, told Forkliftaction.com News that Doosan had set a goal to sell USD100 million of forklifts to the western European market this year.
“Our target is to increase sales in Europe by at least 14 per cent [from 2004]. The market is growing, so a logical step is for us to follow the trend or at least keep our market share.
“But the main reason is, Doosan plans to be number five in the world by 2010 and, to reach this ambitious goal, we need to increase sales each year by at least 14 per cent,” he said.
Doosan’s main European markets are the UK, France, Italy, Germany and Spain and it is represented in every western European country by a dealer network. Doosan is represented by about 40 dealers in each major European market. It has branches in the UK, France, Italy, and Germany and a national importer in Spain.
Vanhemelrijck outlined the differences between forklift models for the Asian and western European markets.
“In Asia cabins are not popular but in Europe they are. We developed cabins according to Scandinavian needs; mainly more windows and more deluxe items like reading lamps, cup holders, suspension seats and others.
“Fingertip controls and joysticks are popular and, like our competitors, we now have them on some models,” he said.
Doosan Infracore exhibited eight forklift models at Manutention 2006 in Paris on March 7. The Seoul-headquartered company used the event to explain its sales strategies to its European dealers and introduce the company’s new name to customers.
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RFID technology evolves, gains traction
HACKENSACK, New Jersey, United States
by US correspondent Roger Renstrom
Use of radio frequency identification (RFID) technology continues to make its mark in the forklift industry with implementations and expanded trials.
American retailer Wal-Mart Stores Inc is transitioning to newer RFID technology and system provider ID Systems Inc has disclosed additional details on a strategic agreement with Nacco Materials Handling Group (NMHG) and its units Yale Materials Handling Corp (YMHC) and Hyster Company.
Wal-Mart is moving toward generation 2 RFID technology in trial locations and “sun-setting gen 1 on June 30”, Rollin Ford, Wal-Mart executive vice president said. Wal-Mart, of Bentonville, Arkansas, was reportedly ordering 15,000 gen 2 readers.
Simon Langford, Wal-Mart RFID strategies manager, said Wal-Mart had been piloting beta-type RFID-enabled forklifts in a laboratory for proof-of-concept tests that began in January.
The firm intends soon to run pilot tests on the effectiveness of RFID-enabled forklifts at six RFID-enabled Sam’s Club locations. The plans call for use of forklifts in tagging cases and pallets of goods during transport in storage and sales areas. A forklift interrogator will read location tags in shelves holding the pallets and enable workers to use the data to determine the location of tagged merchandise.
ID Systems formalised a marketing agreement with NMHG on April 11, its first with a forklift manufacturer. The firms demonstrated the technology at NA 2006 in March (Forkliftaction.com News #254).
Greg Smith, ID Systems vice president of marketing and corporate communications, said ID Systems would attend regional dealer meetings, assist NMHG, of Portland, Oregon, USA, in putting together a corporate strategy and work through the YMHC and Hyster sales organisations to support introduction of RFID technology.
With installation and maintenance requirements, RFID represented “a new potential revenue stream for [forklift] dealers”, Smith said.
A system may add “a few thousand dollars onto the cost of a forklift” but ID Systems had found the payback period was about 12 months-18 months.
Click here to read full story.
New South African company for Kalmar
DURBAN, South Africa
Kalmar has established a new subsidiary company in Durban, South Africa, Kalmar Industries South Africa Pty Ltd.
The company is headed by Edwin Briggeman, who will oversee delivery of straddle carriers ordered by Kalmar customer South African Port Operations (SAPO).
Kalmar container handling president Juhani Lukumaa said the new company would allow Kalmar to give the best available technology, service and support to SAPO.
African National Engineering, which services Kalmar straddle carriers and RTG cranes in major African ports, will work with the new company. Kalmar reach stackers and forklifts would continue to be sold through existing Kalmar dealer, Saficon, a Kalmar statement said.
The Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ) has ordered 24 four-high seventh generation Kalmar CSC 450 straddle carriers and six seven-high Kalmar empty container handlers for its Kingston Container Terminal facility.
New business secured in October 2005 is expected to boost the PAJ’s container throughput by 500,000 TEUs a year.
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New forklift for heavy jobs
READING, United Kingdom
Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks has introduced a new series of electric counterbalanced forklifts for the European, African and Middle Eastern markets.
The Europe-manufactured FB40-50 series, available in load capacities of 4.0 tonnes, 4.5 tonnes and 5.0 tonnes, was introduced to meet the needs of users who needed a higher than normal capacity forklift, Mitsubishi said in a statement.
Nissan redesigns forklift family
MARENGO, IL, United States
Nissan Forklifts’ Platinum BX forklift series has been redesigned to incorporate the latest AC technology.
The forklifts, sporting Nissan’s new metallic silver colour scheme, come in 3,000lb (1,361kg) to 8,000lb (3,629kg) capacities for cushion tyre models and 3,000lb (1,361kg) to 5,000lb (2,268kg) capacities for pneumatic tyre models.
Men accused of forklift and nut theft
Two businessmen from south-western Sydney suburbs are in custody after being charged with stealing forklifts, assorted nuts and bakers’ flour worth more than USD500,000.
Jamal Ali Skaf, 43, of Villawood, and John Matar, 48, of Greenacre, each face more than 40 charges, including larceny, obtaining financial advantage by deception and using false cheques to gain financial advantage, the Canterbury Bankstown Express reported.
Police documents say forklifts worth more than USD300,000 were stolen from Bankstown, Chester Hill and Kingsgrove, in Sydney.
Legal representatives for the pair said they would apply for bail but the case was adjourned until later this month.
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Bolzoni Auramo lift truck attachments in China
The remarkable and growing potential of the Chinese lift truck attachments market has motivated Bolzoni Auramo to make major investments in China. The company has opened a new subsidiary and manufacturing plant in the Shanghai area. The Bolzoni Auramo branch based in Shanghai is a manufacturing and commercial facility supplying the Chinese and Asian market with fork lift truck attachments, after sales services and spare parts support.
Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.
The WSS “DRIVER ID” could save your employees from serious injury or death
The WSS “DRIVER ID” is not unique in its keypad/swipe card entry for forklifts. What sets our product apart is the requirement by the driver to carry out a full startup safety check. The “DRIVER ID” prompts the driver to answer a check list and records their response. Once complete and if all the answers are YES the unit will allow the forklift to start.
Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.
Kocema wants to be cutting edge
SEOUL, Korea, South
The new Korea Construction Equipment Manufacturers Association (Kocema) president says he will help lead members to global prominence through co-operation in acquiring greater technology.
Click here for the full Fork Talk feature, including pictures.
AUSA, set up in 1956 in Manresa, Barcelona, Spain, is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of dumper trucks weighing up to seven tons, rough-terrain forklifts weighing up to 3.5 tons, multiservice vehicles weighing up to 2.5 tons, and concrete mixers and street sweepers.
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