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News Release

Potain reaches 5,000 tower cranes in China


Manitowoc’s tower crane brand, Potain, has built more than 5,000 tower cranes at its manufacturing plant in Zhangjiagang, China. Malaysia-based YTL, a leading international construction company, purchased the 5,001st crane and a handover ceremony was held at the facility to mark the occasion.

YTL bought the MCR 225 A Potain tower crane from Inflextec Engineering, Potain’s Malaysian dealer since 2008. YTL bought its first Potain tower crane in 1984. Today, the company operates a fleet of ten MCR 225 As and is certain to buy more Potain cranes in the future, as Yow Chee Keong, plant & machinery manager at YTL explains.

“We’ve had a Potain tower crane in our fleet since 1984, but we recently invested in seven new units because of the significant improvements that Potain has made,” he says. “They are extremely high performing cranes that are easy to use and simple to erect. We can also interchange masts and maintenance is easy. I am certain we will buy more Potain tower cranes in the future.”

YTL’s Potain cranes have been used on many major projects in Malaysia and Indonesia. Seven of the company’s new MCR 225 As were purchased to work on the Fennel Sentul project in Kuala Lumpur. The cranes will work 16 hours a day for the next three and a half years as they build four 43-story towers at the job site. The cranes will predominantly lift pre-cast planking and steel walls measuring up to 40 m in length. Three units are currently on site with the rest due to follow in the coming weeks. Once complete, the cranes have already been commissioned to build four 50-story towers at a nearby mixed-use development.

The Zhangjiagang plant

Opened in 2006, the Zhangjiagang factory employs the latest technology and precision machinery to produce cranes that match Manitowoc’s global quality standards.

Rapid growth in China meant manufacturers had to adapt accordingly. Price, although important, was no longer king. High-performance cranes packed with technology were in demand, and Potain was poised to serve this need, as Jean-Noel Daguin, senior vice president tower cranes at Manitowoc, explains.

“We mix Chinese manufacturing with European design to create the highest quality tower cranes in China,” he says. “All of our crane structures are manufactured locally, but state-of-the-art technology is imported from our sister factories in France. With increasingly tight deadlines and demanding workloads, contractors favor reliability over cost. And our cranes deliver beyond their expectation.”

Today, the 60,000 m2 plant produces a wide range of Potain tower cranes, which range in capacity from 2.5 t to 25 t, as well as components for other Manitowoc crawler and Grove mobile cranes.

China-built cranes work on projects around the world, with more than 50% of the factory’s output shipped abroad.

Manitowoc’s history of manufacturing in China can be traced back to 1984 when Potain established a licensing agreement with three state-owned-enterprises to build its tower cranes. In the mid-1990s Manitowoc set up a joint venture with the Ling Hong Group, which became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Potain in 2000 and was integrated into Manitowoc a year later.

About The Manitowoc Company, Inc.
The Manitowoc Company, Inc. (“Manitowoc”) was founded in 1902 and has over a 116-year tradition of providing high-quality, customer-focused products and support services to its markets and its 2018 net sales were approximately $1.8 billion. Manitowoc is one of the world's leading providers of engineered lifting solutions. Manitowoc, through its wholly-owned subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, markets, and supports comprehensive product lines of mobile telescopic cranes, tower cranes, lattice-boom crawler cranes, and boom trucks under the Grove, Manitowoc, National Crane, Potain, Shuttlelift and Manitowoc Crane Care brand names.
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