East Kilbride based overhead crane manufacturer KONECRANES UK Ltd – Industrial Crane Division finished 2009 on a high with turnover up 10% on 2008, increased profit as a % of sales and has started 2010 with its order book pretty well full against the company’s current manufacturing capacity.
Despite the recent downturn in many UK sectors, Gordon Adie – Director of the Industrial Crane division commented on performance, "Our programme of investment over the past few years meant that we have been able to take advantage of the opportunities in the growth sectors of waste handling, waste to energy and renewable energy as a whole. Our profitability in 2009 was especially significant for our Process Cranes operation. Now that the weather has improved from the terrible conditions at the end of the year and into 2009 we have been able to catch up on the delivery backlog and clear the factory for urgent orders."
During 2009 the company continued its investment programme which has ploughed nearly £2m increasing production capability. Further investment is ongoing in 2010 with new cranes being installed in April.
The performance of KONECRANES UK Industrial Crane Division bucks the overall trend of the Konecranes Group world wide which reported at the beginning of this month: Despite a slight pick-up in industrial output in the second half of 2009, Konecranes expects the uncertainty to continue, with no credible signs of market recovery visible. The demand for maintenance services is expected to remain stable or to increase gradually should capacity utilization within customer industries continue to improve. The demand for new equipment is expected to remain generally on a low level, and to suffer from overcapacity at customers. Price competition is likely to remain. A high degree of fluctuation between quarters may continue due to the timing of orders.
The year 2010 began with a thinner order book than the previous year. Our forecast is that sales in 2010 will be lower than in 2009. We expect the operating profit in 2010 to be lower than in 2009 before restructuring costs.