Global companies acquire, discuss strategies.
Alimak Acquires Avanti Wind Systems
Alimak Group has acquired Avanti Wind Systems, a supplier of service lifts for wind turbine towers worldwide. Established in 1885 and with factories in Brazil, China, Denmark, Spain and the U.S., Avanti has more than 30,000 lifts installed worldwide. The acquisition brings Alimak’s employment from 1,900 to 2,300, and its installed base from 36,000 to 66,000 units. Alimak CEO Tormod Gunleisksrud observed:
“The demand for service lifts for wind turbine towers is expected to grow in coming years, due to increased heights of towers and increased safety requirements. The acquisition expands and diversifies our offerings of vertical-access solutions for industrial customers globally, enables cross-selling opportunities and adds an opportunity to expand aftersales well in line with Alimak’s strategy and business model.”
Schindler CEO: Conditions Ripe for Chinese Takeovers
Schindler CEO Thomas Oetterli said that a Chinese market that continues to contract, forcing domestic elevator makers to drop prices, is setting the stage for Schindler and other major OEMs to increase their presence there through acquisitions, Reuters reported. Representing 60% of the world’s new lift installations, the Chinese elevator market dropped 5% in 2015 and 7% in 2016. This year, a drop of up to 3% is projected. With little price difference between domestic and international companies, customers are more likely to go with the majors due to perceived better value. China has approximately 400 OEMs and thousands of maintenance companies striving to compete and vulnerable to acquisition. Schindler has already taken advantage of the situation, increasing its stake in Chinese joint venture XJ Elevator Co. in 2014 and buying a 75% stake in Volkslift in 2016.
Two-Tower The Address Residences Breaks Ground in Dubai
Emaar Hospitality Group has broken ground on The Address Residences Jumeirah Resort + Spa on the last piece of available property in Dubai’s Jumeirah Beach Walk, The National reported. Consisting of a pair of 74-story structures joined at the bottom and top, the property will be the tallest in Jumeirah Beach Walk and overlook the beach and attractions like Ain Dubai, which will be the world’s highest observation wheel. In addition to apartments, The Address will house approximately 180 hotel rooms. Completion is anticipated by 2020.
ELA/EFESME Initiative Progresses
A cooperation initiative launched in 2016 between the European Lift Association (ELA) and the European Federation of Elevator Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EFESME) is progressing following several meetings, the organizations report. Aimed at representing the overall industry on codes and standards; safety, education and training; and accessibility, the partners, along with Notified Bodies for Lifts, stated they are addressing “the difficulty encountered by the industry as a whole for applying harmonized standards.” They have proposed to the European Union Commission that verbiage stating lifts be delivered in accordance with contractual agreements be made part of the Guide of Application to the Lifts Directive update. Other interested parties are welcome to participate in the initiative and may contact EFESME at email@example.com and ELA at firstname.lastname@example.org.