MOVUS secures investment from Australia’s largest venture capital firms

Brisbane-headquartered company MOVUS, the developer of Industrial IoT (Internet of Things) sensor and machine monitoring solutions has secured $4.8M in Series A funding. The round, led by Blackbird Ventures, included Telstra Ventures and Skip Capital.
The investment will allow MOVUS to scale up to international markets, further refine its product, expand its Research & Development Lab, and grow its Brisband-based team.
“This Series A funding is critical as we are poised to scale with many new customer deployments which allow us to accelerate growth globally and pass on the benefits to customers via more rapid delivery of improvements. We’ll also be growing our engineering team and are particularly interested in people with a passion for hardware design and machine learning,” said Brad Parsons, CEO and Founder of MOVUS. “Our vision is to transform machines across their lifecycle to dramatically improve these industries for the benefit of the planet.”
With a track record of investing in high growth digital businesses, Rick Baker, Co-Founder of Blackbird Ventures said “Industrial machinery is the engine room of our economy and the FitMachine plays a crucial role in ensuring it runs smoothly and efficiently. We’re proud to join the journey of MOVUS.”

Adaptalift to showcase specialist materials handling equipment

A range of professional materials handling solutions will be on display on forklift specialist Adaptlift’s stand at trade event MEGATRANS2018, taking place 10–12 May 2018.
The company has revealed that its stand will feature its Combilift range of multidirectional materials-handling units, which are suited for handling long loads such as timber and piping in narrow areas.
“MEGATRANS2018 will allow us to showcase our extremely diverse product offering to many market segments and diverse customers in one large show,” said Chris Walker, General Manager of Adaptalift brand Combilift Australia.
According to Paul Hinz, Marketing Coordinator for Adaptalift, the company is looking forward to using MEGATRANS2018 as an opportunity to generate qualified industry leads.
“Trade shows are valuable to Adaptalift as they provide an opportunity to talk openly regarding the equipment and really understand the concept behind it, and how Combilift units can benefit businesses,” he said, adding that trade shows are as valuable for exhibitors as they are for visitors.
“For us, it’s also a bonus that we can wander around and catch up on industry trends and see what others in the space are doing.”
Two developing technologies Hinz will be keeping his eyes peeled for at the show are automated guided vehicles (AGVs) and fleet management software.
“Everyone’s looking to maximise their operations not only from a cost point of view, but also efficiency and safety, it’s something Adaptalift’s very involved in since we have our own fleet management system – ForkTrack,” he said.
Adaptalift, the official Australian distributor for Combilift and Hyster forklifts, is Australia’s largest privately owned forklift company. Originally founded in 1982 as a designer and manufacturer of forklift attachments, the company has since added forklift rental and purchase options in response to customer demand, and now has a national network of branches and a fleet of 10,500 units nationwide.

Maxilift opens new branch in Adelaide

Crane specialist, Maxilift Australia, has announced the opening of a new facility in north Adelaide, which the company has said is the next step in its growth to provide better service.
The new Adelaide branch is located at 501 South Road, Regency Park. Maxilift Australia’s headquarters is based in Lonsdale, South Australia.
“With this new branch we can reduce costs for our northern-based customers with the associated travel time that it takes for cranes, trucks and personnel to reach our site in the south,” said Maxilift Australia General Manager, Kymberly Davis.
“Our customers in the north will receive the same service and level of care that is offered from our head office, including greater technical support from personnel with years of experience. This branch makes Maxilift Australia the only company in Adelaide to service both the north and south.”

Optimistic outlook for Australia's logistics sector

Australia’s industrial and logistics occupiers are generally optimistic about the future and expect their businesses to be better off financially in the next 12 months, an inaugural survey carried out by commercial real estate services and investment firm CBRE found.
The Australian Industrial and Logistics Occupier Survey was undertaken to gain a better understanding of decision-making drivers, occupier strategies and how changes in technology and automation are impacting real-estate requirements.
Kate Bailey, Senior Research Manager, CBRE, said the results reflected an engaged and optimistic industrial and logistics market, with 66 per cent of respondents expecting their business to be better off financially and 25 per cent expecting things to stay the same over the next 12 months.
The retailing, warehousing and distribution sector were the most positive, with 86 per cent of respondents expecting their business to be better off.
“Surveys of this kind have rarely been undertaken in the Australian industrial and logistics market, meaning there has been limited benchmarking of what drives occupiers’ decision making,” said Bailey.
Manufacturers were found to be the most likely to want a smaller occupancy, with 21 per cent preferring a smaller footprint. This was possibly reflective of the shift towards high-tech manufacturing, which was less floorspace intensive, Bailey said.
CBRE Senior Managing Director, Industrial & Logistics, Matt Haddon, said the survey also highlighted key trends and attitudes in relation to sustainability, e-commerce, new development practices such as multi-storey warehousing, and the drivers behind occupiers’ site selection criteria.
“It is likely that the drive to incorporate sustainable design elements in industrial and logistics assets will continue to be led by the owner-occupier sector, with this group most likely to amortise initial expenses such as solar panels and wind turbines and see the flow on benefits from sustainable demand first hand,” said Haddon.
When it came to e-commerce, one of the more surprising findings was that the impact was yet to be fully realised in the sector, with 42 per cent of respondents indicating that they had seen no change from the growth of e-commerce in the past five years.
In relation to multi-storey warehousing, the survey found that while there was a high level of awareness from respondents (90 per cent) only 25 per cent of respondents would consider this style of asset.
The level of appeal was higher amongst retail/warehousing and wholesaling occupiers (50 per cent appeal, 50 per cent consideration) and lower amongst manufacturers (20 per cent appeal, 17 per cent consideration) – possibly due to the high cost of specialised machinery and equipment.
Turning to site selection, the survey found that access to road networks, key transport infrastructure and skilled employees had the highest level of perceived importance when selecting an industrial or logistics property.

Lindsay Australia chooses Toyota for new warehouse fit-out

Transport and logistics company Lindsay Australia has continued its two-decade relationship with Toyota after recently moving in to a new, purpose-built warehouse and refurbishing an existing facility at Brisbane’s Rocklea markets.
Lindsay Australia recently consolidated three separate sites into its new 11,000m2 combined head office, cold storage, workshop, warehouse and transport facility in Acacia Ridge. In the process it added a new fleet of 10 Raymond 8410 pallet trucks, three Toyota 8FBE three-wheel counterbalance forklifts and two BT RRE reach trucks to its existing Toyota warehouse equipment fleet.
In addition to the new Acacia Ridge facility Lindsay Transport recently moved into and refurbished an existing fresh produce warehouse at the nearby Brisbane markets in Rocklea, and the adoption of Toyota’s fast charge technology for its Toyota battery-electric forklifts enabled it to establish its own fumigation room.
“We have the only temperature-controlled DAFF-accredited facility that includes fumigation,” Bob McMillan, General Manager, Lindsay Fresh Logistics. “The opportunity came about when we no longer needed a designated battery charging area, enabling this footprint to be used for fumigation.”
TMHA corporate account customer manager Dave Bartlett said Lindsay Transport now takes advantage of fast charging in short periods of downtime rather than having to charge its forklifts for eight hours each night.
“The forklifts can be charged in period as short as 10 minutes when they’re not in use,” Bartlett said. “This relatively new type of charging technology means you can effectively get 10 hours of battery life rather than seven, and being able to set up their own fumigation facility means they can work much more efficiently while saving a lot of time and money.”

Smart machine technology to go mainstream by 2021

Smart machines, comprising artificial intelligence, intelligent automation, machine learning and deep learning, are to go mainstream by 2021, with 30 per cent adoption by large companies, according to US research firm Gartner, Inc.
“The use of smart machines by enterprises can be transformative and disruption,” said Susan Tan, Research Vice President, Gartner. “Smart machines will profoundly change the way work is done and how value is created. For service providers, smart machines represent opportunities to help enterprises assess, select, implement, change and adapt talent, and for IT and business processes, the opportunity to successfully adopt smart machines for business benefits.”
Gartner predicts spending on smart machine consulting and system integration (C&SI) services to increase from $451 million in 2016 to almost $29 billion by 2021, with the main window for technology adoption occurring between 2020 and 2025. “Enterprises’ investments into smart machines will span more than a decade, implying that the smart machine consulting and system integration (C&SI) service market will be a long-term one,” the company wrote.

Manitou MAN'GO 12: the access platform revolution!

Manitou, the world leader in all-terrain loading and lifting equipment, has more than 15 years of experience in the manufacturing and distribution of access platforms.

With a wide range of elevating platforms, Manitou has the solution to all types of lifting equipment needs.

Firstly released in European markets earlier this year, the new Manitou MAN'GO 12 is now available in Australia, New Zealand and the rest of Oceania.

Capable of lifting workers up to 12m (39ft) high, the MAN'GO 12 is dedicated for structural work, finishing work, pruning, industrial cleaning and much more.

With its large basket capable of hosting 2 people at once or 230kg and its compact design, workers can access all types of restricted area without losing in safety and efficiency.

Fully compliant under Australia's standards, the MAN'GO 12 does not require a licence for elevated work platform operations as the machine's boom length is under 11 meters.

This new access platform offers all of the benefits of Manitou's DNA: safety, quality and reliability while being one of the most economically advantageous platforms for rental companies and their customers on the market.

With this revolutionary machine, Manitou offers a solution that is competitive while still meeting the market's expectations.

"We really wanted to respond to a requirement with a dedicated technical solution. Each function has been completely redesigned, without any inhibitions, to offer an appropriate alternative, while of course always keeping in mind the attractive aspect that is sought in economic terms, but also for greater simplicity. with the MAN'GO, we are showing that we can take a different approach while still retaining the very essence of Manitou," Product Manager Samuel Viaud.

1st revolutionary change: the operating mechanism -a redesigned lifting structure driven by a single arm and a system of fulcrums which improves speed of movement.

2nd revolutionary change: the transmission based on the wheel engines retains the machine's all-terrain character through control and management of the distribution of hydraulic oil in the 4-wheel engines and differential hydraulic locking.

3rd revolutionary change: the engine located in the chassis gives a lower center of gravity, which contributes to making the machine lighter.

4th revolutionary change: the name of this new access platform, the MAN'GO is totally distinct from its fellow TJ and ATJ machines on the numerous points mentioned above, and especially in terms of design and graphical charter.

5th revolutionary change: With a boom length of 9.9 metres precisely, the MAN'GO 12 does not require any licence for elevated work platform operations.

The Bollore Group wins the contract for the future port concession at Dili

Following an international invitational to tender, the authorities of East Timor, advised by the finance institution IFC, have chosen the Bollore Group to build and operate the deepwater port at Dili under a public-private partnership agreement.

The ambitious project involves the construction of a 630m wharf with a draught of 15m, and a 24 hectare yard.

The port facility, in accordance with international standards, will have state-of-the-art container and general cargo handling equipment offering a stevedoring capability for container ships carrying over 7,500 TEUs.

According to CEO of Bollore Ports Transport & Logistics Philippe Labonne, the partnership will be entered into a 30-year term as it creates over 350 direct jobs and enable new businesses to set up in the future port zone.

"We are very proud to have been selected to work with the authorities of East Timor on this project. It will help to speed up the growth of the nation's economy by facilitating trade with Asia and the rest of the world to the benefit of the whole population."

With a strong track record of success in France and Africa, Bollore Transport & Logistics has decided to export its know-how to other emerging regions.

It already holds an Asian port concession at Tuticorin at the southern tip of India, in Central America & the Caribbean with a partnership to operate the TVB Terminal at Port-au-Prince in Haiti, and now in South-East Asia in East Timor. 

Hitachi to build new site at Forrestdale West

Hitachi Construction Machinery Australia has announced that it will begin building a facility at Armadale’s Forrestdale West Business Park greenfield site.

Construction is slated to begin in April next year at the site, south of Perth and adjacent to the Tonkin Highway, and this will include specialised buildings for:

• Mining assembly facility for both mining trucks and mining excavators;
• Remanufacturing workshop;
• Specialised paint booth, wash bay area, caustic wash and soda blast station;
• Parts Distribution Centre; 
• Branch building including a comprehensive machine workshop; and
• Dedicated training facility.

Hitachi Construction Machinery’s managing director David Harvey said in a statement that, “The new facility to be built is a strategic investment in our company’s future, and aims to strengthen our ability to deliver the highest level of support to our customers in the Western Australian market as well as further afield.

Hitachi's facility will be the first at the business park, which, according to planning minister John Day, would eventually include 700 business lots

The project’s total cost is estimated at $100 million and will replace the company’s Welshpool facility.

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