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LiuGong keen to build on rapid global growth

First publishedin Aggregates Business International
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Customers, dealers, current and past employees, and the world's trade media were among the 5,000 attendees at LiuGong's 60th anniversary celebration event in Liuzhou
Major Chinese global construction and quarrying equipment market manufacturer LiuGong marked its 60th anniversary year by staging a celebration event at the company’s global HQ in Liuzhou, China. Guy Woodford was among those in attendance.

LiuGong chairman Zeng Guang’an says that the firm is fully embracing Industry 4.0 technology. Coupled with ongoing machine development, an expanding global sales and manufacturing network and long-established strong relationships with customers and suppliers, this is enabling the Chinese construction equipment giant to target a significant rise by 2025 on its RMB 18 billion (US$2.6bn) global sales revenues in 2018.

Chairman Zeng outlined the impressive scale of LiuGong’s future ambitions during an impassioned speech in front of an audience of 5,000 attendees, including customers, employees - past and present, dealers and the world’s trade media, during an address in the morning session of the 60th anniversary celebration event on 26 November 2018.

“We have stepped forward on the path of global development and built ourselves from a remote enterprise to an international enterprise,” said Zeng. “We are pushing ahead with our overseas operations and joint venture alliances. The world today is experiencing a fourth industrial revolution. Our strategy is to bring talents from across the world and develop our manufacturing intelligence capabilities.”

Zeng said LiuGong owed its existence to its customers and close cooperation with its suppliers, adding, “We will work to write more shared stories of success. With passion and determination, LiuGong is moving towards its next 60 years.”

LiuGong used its landmark celebration to unveil six new machines, while also marking the production of the company’s 400,000th wheeled loader.

The 60th anniversary event also included a press conference involving Zeng Guang’an and other key senior company executives, a film-based tribute to the company’s founders, several of whom were present, a product history and achievement exhibition, and a 60th anniversary gala dinner. The second day of the 60th anniversary event was dedicated to a global dealer conference.

During the press conference, Zeng spoke of the vibrancy of the Chinese construction equipment market – with leading industry market research firms estimating 300,000-unit sales in 2018. He said India had the biggest growth potential for LiuGong, given prime minister Narendra Modi’s huge transport infrastructure investment programme in a country with a population of 1.2 billion, second only to China but tipped to become the world’s most populated country in the coming years.

Zeng also spoke of the success of LiuGong’s now four-year-old Chinese market joint venture (JV) with Metso, the global crusher and screener equipment manufacturer. From next year, all Metso’s product range will be manufactured in China, significantly cutting machine production and shipping costs. “It is currently a niche market business for us, but the joint venture has great potential.”

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LiuGong chairman Zeng Guang'an addressing the company's global dealer conference in Liuzhou on 27 November 2018
LiuGong’s chairman said the company’s Metso JV had given its domestic customers access to a complete construction and quarrying equipment range.

In his morning session address, Zeng had also stressed how LiuGong’s growing global market reach has allowed it to seize the opportunities brought by the Chinese government’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ (OBOR) programme. LiuGong covers more than 85% of the 65 key OBOR countries and regions and LiuGong has participated extensively in construction projects along ‘OBOR’, such as the Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge and national power plant projects in Turkey, Ashdod Port and Tel Aviv light rail construction in Israel, China-Laos and China-Thailand railway construction, the PMK expressway in Pakistan and the China-Myanmar gas pipeline project, along with many others.

LiuGong manufactured China’s first modernised wheeled loader in 1966 and in 1976 produced its first articulated and oversized wheeled loaders. In 1993, it became China’s first publicly traded construction equipment company.

Since securing its first overseas dealer in Morocco, North Africa, in 2003, launching its first overseas subsidiary company in Australia in 2004, and opening its first overseas manufacturing plant in India in 2007, LiuGong’s overseas development has been rapid.

In 2012, LiuGong successfully acquired the HSW civil construction machinery business in southern Poland, enabling the firm to become one of only three construction equipment manufacturers in the world to offer a full line of bulldozers. The acquisition also laid a solid foundation for LiuGong to introduce its new technology and products to mature western markets.

In 2017, LiuGong opened its third overseas manufacturing facility, in Brazil, and moved into a new European headquarters in Warsaw, Poland, while simultaneously opening a new parts distribution centre at LiuGong Dressta’s facility in Stalowa Wola, southern Poland. This has enabled LiuGong to launch ‘Made in Poland’ excavators and wheeled loaders on to the European market.

In 2018, LiuGong India celebrated its 15th anniversary of business and 10th anniversary of the LiuGong India plant, announcing a new investment to further enlarge the facility’s production capacity. Additionally, with the introduction of the production of H series wheeled loaders, LiuGong India has shown its importance as a key growth point for LiuGong’s overseas business.

After more than 15 years of development, LiuGong has established one of the most extensive global sales networks of any Chinese company, with its 2,650 sales outlets and more than 300 dealers in over 130 countries assisted by 12 regional offices with engineering, marketing and service support. Coupled with LiuGong’s nine regional parts depots and three overseas manufacturing plants, this ensures the rapid availability of parts and service of equipment in local markets.

LiuGong has subsidiary companies based in Johannesburg, South Africa; Sydney, Australia; Belo Horizonte, Brazil; Dubai; Europe; New Delhi, India; Poland; Singapore; Moscow, Russia; and Houston, United States. The company also has a highly successful joint venture with Cummins, Guangxi Cummins Industrial Power, which includes a mid-range engine manufacturing facility in Liuzhou. Liuzhou ZF Machinery is a long-established joint venture between LiuGong and ZF Friedrichshafen of Germany which manufactures driveline and parts of driveline for construction machinery.

Speaking during the LiuGong global dealer conference held in Liuzhou the day after the 60th anniversary celebration, company president Huang Haibo said: “Looking forward to the future, innovation and transformation will remain vital to LiuGong. The company is committed to becoming a world-leading construction machinery manufacturer. As a result, LiuGong’s pursuit of a continuous progress in the overseas market will never stop. We will always stand side by side with our dealers to achieve our goals.”

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