The Bigger Picture

9 September 2020


As some of you may have noticed, since the beginning of the pandemic we have been very careful as to how we cover its effects on our industry. Our aim was to let some time pass before covering this subject in-depth, so that we could provide a more accurate analysis on the impact.

In this issue we have dedicated a number of pages on it, looking into Covid-19’s effect on different parts of the crane industry.

The financial results of publicly-listed manufacturers have revealed significant reductions in sales revenue. US and European manufacturers reported their figures for the first half of the year, with the fall in year-on-year sales revenues ranging from 18.3% to 28.7%. The change reported solely for the second quarter of the year was even greater.

Tadano’s results for the first quarter of its fiscal year showed an increase in sales revenue, attributed to the consolidation of the Demag business, but an operating loss.

Crane rental companies have also seen their revenues shrink during the pandemic. A number of them from around the world have shared with us their thoughts as to how Covid-19 impacted their business and their expectations for the next six months. It is clear that some have been affected much more than others.

Apart from the equipment ulitisation, they have talked about the safety precautions that they have taken to reduce the risk of contamination.

Complying with Covid-19 safety guidelines is an enormous challenge for contractors, hirers, dealers and manufacturers. Already facing financial difficulties, these companies have additional costs associated with compliance, for example disinfecting the machinery and arranging safe employee site accommodation. Also a significant amount of time is allocated to the tasks necessary to meet the safety guidelines, and time is money. In this issue Stuart Anderson analyses the impact of the safety guidelines on businesses. Interestingly, he finds that certain crane types offer lower contamination possibilities.

Unfortunately, Covid-19 will remain the main subject of conversations within the industry for the near future. We will continue to monitor and analyse its effect on different parts of the industry in upcoming issues. If you would like to share your thoughts as to how your business has been impacted by the pandemic, do not hesitate to contact me.