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Wolffkran opens Middle East hub in Dubai

Wolffkran is expanding its presence with a regional office in Dubai

At the launch: Martin Kirby, MD, Wolffkran Arabia, Joseph Sayegh, Wolffkran AG, Bob Curtis, CEO, Kanoo Group, Dr Peter Schiefer, CEO, Wollfkran AG
At the launch: Martin Kirby, MD, Wolffkran Arabia, Joseph Sayegh, Wolffkran AG, Bob Curtis, CEO, Kanoo Group, Dr Peter Schiefer, CEO, Wollfkran AG

The German crane manufacturer Wolffkran has opened a Middle East regional hub in Dubai, a vote of confidence for the long term strength of the construction market in the GCC and further afield.

The opening attended by the CEO of Wolffkran, Dr Peter Schiefer, and board members, the Dubai office will support their interests in the UAE and Saudi Arabia, as well as the wider Middle East, India, and Africa.

"The Middle East region is one of the key regions in my eyes right now," said Schiefer, speaking at the launch. "We felt that we needed to have a big presence."

"And I think [Dubai] is a natural hub, since you're going to find a lot of people from Iran, Iraq, India, even Africa. Dubai seems to be the melting pot now, where everybody comes together."

The new regional office occupies the same floor of a Tecom tower as the offices of their UAE joint venture with Kanoo Group, Wolffkran Arabia.

Martin Kirby, managing director of Wolffkran Arabia, said the company is set to further benefit from close access to the technical expertise of Wolffkran, with the office including training rooms for operators, Autocad engineers, and technical support for cranes direct from Germany.

"We're the only company in the region that can really bring to bear that technical solution, primarily because we've got that support direct from Germany.

"Today is about opening up new offices and expanding our business in the region, when market conditions are challenging. We're here for the medium-to-long-term, and everyone sees the vision of where this company is going to go in the future."

Wolffkran Arabia offer rental solutions for cranes, combining cranes, operators, and planning support.

Wolffkran also has a JV in Saudi with Roots Arabia, and its red cranes were prominent on construction sites in Makkah. Schiefer believes that with their partners they are well-positioned to expand their presence in the region.

"With Kanoo we have one of the strongest partners and powerhouses in the region. With Roots, combined with Saudi Bin Laden, we have one of the powerhouses in Saudi. For this region I can think of no other constellation that could be more beneficial to us."

Safety is a big focus for Wolffkran. Schiefer is the chairman of Committee for European Construction Equipment's (CECE) tower crane section, and is scheduled to talk about crane safety at The Big 5.

"Safety is one of our biggest concerns, and the one issue we're dealing with all the time," said Schiefer.

"We introduced new standards in the tower crane business, these standards are basically all about safety. For the future that's the prime issue that we have to deal with."


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Construction Week - Issue 725
Jan 19, 2019