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News Release

Potain cranes keep Guangzhou Shenfeng Steel standing tall


Guangzhou Shenfeng Iron and Steel Industry Co., Ltd.,based in Guangzhou, China, recorded steady business growth for its crane rental division in its 2015 financial year – in stark contrast to many of its peers – and amid a backdrop of declining construction work and infrastructure development in the country. It credits its impressive business performance for the rental sector to its early decision to purchase superior Potain cranes as opposed to lower cost, lower spec alternatives.

“Chinese contractors are famous for being price sensitive with little regard for brand loyalty. But in recent times there’s been a strong focus on safety and reliable performance from cranes on job sites which means we’re seeing more attention on the quality Potain cranes in our rental fleet, that we combine with our regular service offering to minimize costly downtime for contractors,” said Hong Zuoxiong, general manager, Guangzhou Shenfeng Steel. “This dedication and focus has ensured we stay relevant, as the industry faces shrinking demand for rental cranes.”

The state of the construction machinery rental business in China at present is a far cry from the boom of 2012, the year Guangzhou Shenfeng Steel made its strategic decision to add Potain tower cranes to its business and to establish a separate rental division. After assessing various options on the market, the company opted for an MC 120B and an MC 170C from Potain, both built at the Manitowoc factory in Zhangjiagang, in China’s Jiangsu province. The MC 120B has a 6 t maximum capacity and can work with up to 60 m of jib, with a capacity of 1.15 t at the jib end. The larger MC 170C has an 8 t maximum capacity and it too can work with up to 60 m of jib although it has a larger 1.5 t maximum capacity at its jib end.

Upon establishing its crane rental division, Guangzhou Shenfeng Steel decided on two guiding principles, as Ye Xiufang, chairwoman of Guangzhou Shenfeng Steel’s parent company, Guangzhou Xin Wufeng Steel Group, explained.

“Our first decision was to establish a strong brand presence and so purchasing Potain cranes made perfect sense as the cranes already have an international reputation for superior quality and we felt that would help us make our name. Second, we decided we would provide the very highest levels of service to our customers, that would be unmatched by our competitors. With these two principles in place we were confident we could help our customers save costs and improve their productivity.”

The quality of Potain’s cranes was put to the sternest of tests last year when a devastating typhoon hit Zhanjiang where one of the cranes was working. Out of the wreckage of the job site, only the Potain tower crane was left standing among the many units installed on the project. Needless to say this only served to strengthen the reputation of Potain cranes among the local construction sector.

“In hard to reach rural work sites, equipment downtime can cause significant losses and more so in South China, where frequent erratic weather conditions including torrential rain, and even typhoons, present an ongoing operational challenges. Because of this many customers want to try and bring more certainty to their projects and so are willing to pay for stronger and more reliable products,” added Hong.

As part of its product development process, all new Potain crane models undergo rigorous testing at the Zhangjiagang plant, while cranes destined for use in South China region are also fitted with strong corrosion-resistant films to enable better durability in the harsh, salt-rich coastal rains.

To date, the Potain cranes rented by Guangzhou Shenfeng Steel have played a significant role in a number of successful infrastructure projects including a subway construction job in Huadu and a highway project in Longhuai. Potain is the leading tower crane brand in southern China and Guangzhou Shenfeng Steel for one is committed its partnership with the company, which it sees as the foundation for future growth.
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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