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Recap: Fall 2017 Dealer Sales Meeting

CONTINUING TO MOVE FASTER TOGETHER

Since the release of five new products at ProMat earlier this year, KION North America has worked to continue capitalizing on that momentum.

From Oct. 25-27, the company hosted a dealer sales update  meeting in Charleston, S.C. There were more than 150 attendees representing 63 dealerships from throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico equaling 85 percent of the company’s dealer network.

PLANT TOUR

Upon arriving in the Lowcountry,  attendees were taken on a private tour of KION North America’s facilities including its manufacturing plant and parts warehouse. Several facility upgrades have been made in the two years since the company’s last Charleston-based dealer meeting including the addition of new assembly and storage areas, a counterweight (CTW) roller system, the changeover to DC-powered torque tools, controlled monitoring and the soon-to-be-completed external covering for stock equipment. The plant tour was followed by a pig and oyster roast welcome dinner.

“We’ve been moving at such a fast pace over the last several years that we wanted to take the opportunity to not only acknowledge, but also to celebrate, where we started and how far we’ve come,” said Vincent Halma, president and CEO of KION North America.

 

NEW PRODUCTS & TECHNOLOGY

The second day was dedicated to learning about new products and technologies which included additions to both the company’s Linde and Baoli product lines. Attendees also had the opportunity to test drive each of the new products along with some popular existing models.

The Linde Series 1346 is a stand-up electric counterbalanced truck with a load capacity ranging from 3,500-4,000 pounds. This truck is best suited for loading and unloading supplies from trucks and working in tight aisles.

In its economy segment, the company introduced the Baoli KBE25C (electric powered) and the Baoli KBG25C (LPG powered). Both cushion tire forklifts, they are designed to work in a variety of indoor environments. Their small size and sharp turn radius are ideal for working in tight spaces, loading docks and in high lift dock-to-stock operations.

Additionally, Dematic showcased the new iGo neo, a dual-use automated guided vehicle. This vehicle can operate as both a traditional walker-rider machine or as a fully automatic AGV. This new technology can improve overall picking performance by up to 30 percent. The iGo neo is powered by STILL and will be sold in North America by Dematic.

These additions complete their goal of the largest new product release in company and material handling industry in a single year, which they began with the introduction of five new volume and economy segment forklifts at ProMat in Chicago earlier this year.

“By adding eight new products to our product portfolio this year, we are one step closer to achieving our goal of transitioning from a premium, niche equipment provider to a full-line material handling equipment provider,” added Halma.

 

GOLF TOURNAMENT

The meeting concluded on Friday with a captain’s choice golf tournament at Dunes West Golf Club in Mount Pleasant. There were 15 teams comprised of over 60 participants. Brian Hutto, a regional sales manager with KION North America had a hole in one on the 169-yard 17th hole. Finishing in first place were Lonnie Boyd and Jon Paul Tabor of CE-DFW and Tim Woeste, KION North America key account manager.

WHAT’S NEXT?

KION North America’s next planned product release will come in 2018 with the introduction of their much anticipated warehouse product line.

Recap: ProMat 2017

MOVING FASTER TOGETHER

The goal for all KION Group companies represented at ProMat was to make a statement. With the largest combined footprint of exhibit space at the show entrance, coordinating signage and aisle lighting directing attendees down KION Boulevard, we achieved that goal.

On day one, we hosted a joint press conference along with Dematic. Gordon Riske, CEO of KION Group, spoke about how far our companies have come and our direction for the future as we leverage our synergies. Scott Watts, executive vice president of Dematic North America, shared how to leverage software and automation to respond to today’s ever-challenging business requirements.

The three closed the press conference by answering questions from members of the media. In their coverage, Materials Management & Distribution magazine wrote “KION stole the show at ProMat.”

If you haven’t had a chance to view, you can watch the replay of our live stream from the press conference on KION North America’s Facebook page.

 

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MAKING HISTORY

KION North America made history with the release of five new forklifts at ProMat—the largest product release in both company and material handling industry history.

The Linde Series 1347 is an electric, cushion tire truck powered by either a 36V or 48V battery. The Linde Series 1219 and 1319 are two internal combustion, counterbalanced torque converter trucks. Powered by a Ford 2.5L fuel-injected engine, the 1219 is suited for outdoor applications whereas the 1319 is suited for indoor use. All three trucks feature load capacities ranging from 5,000 to 6,500 lbs.

The Baoli KBD Series features a Kohler Tier 4 Final diesel engine and load capacities up to 7,000 lbs.

Prior to the show, KION NA also introduced the Linde Series 1279—an electric Class I truck with pneumatic tires with a load capacity of 13,000 to 17,500 lbs. Two additional Baoli models and a Linde Class I stand-on electric will be added to the company’s product line later this year.

With these additions to its Linde and Baoli product lines, the company now has a more comprehensive product portfolio of industrial trucks.

 

Promat 2017 Foto: KIONGROUP/Oliver Lang

 

DEALER MEETING & AWARDS

On day three of ProMat, KION North America hosted a meeting for its dealer distribution network. In addition to product information, attendees learned about new services including Lithium-ion battery technology and Linde’s fleet management tool—Connected Solutions, and the company’s new retail financing program.

During the meeting, dealers who do not carry other OEM product lines were presented with KION North America blazers in recognition of their dedication and commitment to the company’s mission. Recipients were as follows: Tim Balint of Advantage Materials Handling; Michel Lavoie of Equipment Industriels Bdl, Inc.; Gene Brogan of Homestead Materials Handling; Ed Mauser, Sr. of Industrial Parts and Service; Chris Reynolds of IPW Lift Techs; Garrett Casey of Kaweah Lift; Mark Milovich of Lift Atlanta; and Greg Radonich of Lift Truck Service, Inc.

Afterward, the company hosted a hospitality event at the original Harry Caray’s location—an iconic Chicago establishment—where guests were treated to a meet and greet with Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg. At this event, KION North America awarded their top dealers based on their 2016 performance.

 

Promat 2017Foto: KIONGROUP/Oliver Lang

 

Promat 2017 Foto: KIONGROUP/Oliver Lang

 

TEST DRIVE EXPERIENCE

To complement our booth display at ProMat, KION North America hosted a product showcase and test drive experience at Illinois Material Handling’s new Bolingbrook location on the final day of the show. Other dealers who attended ProMat, as well as customers located throughout the Chicagoland and Rockford areas, traveled to see the latest in lift truck technology. The electric, LP and diesel-powered trucks forklifts available included those featuring Linde’s patented hydrostatic drive and advanced 80-volt technologies. It was also a special opportunity to drive the new Linde 1411 Series 35,000 lb. capacity lift truck—one of the largest forklifts on the market.

 

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ProMat 2017 attracted more than 950 exhibitors and thousands of attendees from around the world to Chicago’s McCormick Place. Overall, the show was a huge success and major milestone for KION North America.