25 June 2021, 10:16
BLE (Belgium Lifting Equipment), which has supplied and serviced Potain self-erecting cranes in Belgium since 2008, has reached a major milestone.
The Puurs, Flanders-based dealer has sold its 500th self-erecting crane, a Potain Hup 40-30, to AS Bau to be used in structural work and roofing, as well as the installation of facades, exterior carpentry, and other exterior fittings.
BLE attributes its growth to a focus on outstanding aftersales support and smart partnerships across Belgium, which differentiate it from the competition.
Belgian Potain dealer BLE has sold its 500th self-erecting crane, a Hup 40-30, to AS Bau, based in Rocherath, Wallonia. Owners Andreas and Isabelle Schmitz-Heinrichs founded AS Bau in 2016 and have been customers of Mondia (a company wholly-owned by BLE) almost ever since. They already have two Potain Igo 32 self-erecting cranes in their fleet and will use the new Hup 40-30 for structural work and roofing, as well as the installation of facades, exterior carpentry and other exterior fittings.
BLE marked the milestone with two banners saying ‘I am number 500’ alongside the BLE, Potain, Mondia and AS Bau logos. BLE and AS Bau staff also enjoyed a cake decorated with the number 500 and the company logos.
“Potain self-erecting cranes offer many advantages over other brands – exclusive remote control as standard, a battery charger integrated in the cabinet, automatic lubrication, lubrication points on each pivot, excellent galvanization, cables inside the mast, electrical cabinet heating, engines protected from the elements. The list goes on!” says Bert Pauwels, sales and marketing manager at BLE.
Industry-leading service and footprint
BLE, based in Puurs, Flanders, employs 27 people and has its own facility, technicians, spare parts stock, aftersales team and workshop. The dealer also works with partners across Belgium to offer a rental fleet of around 100 cranes.
Since the company started representing Potain self-erecting cranes in 2008, it has focused on offering quality aftersales service and a large stock of spare parts. BLE has also been flexible towards its customers regarding financing, rental options and trade-ins of old Potain cranes.
“To ensure quick support for our customers, we work with five partners throughout Belgium who transport the machines and provide aftersales service. These partners also move cranes from other brands and when the time comes to replace a crane, they recommend Potain. This way of working has been very successful for us and we have grown together with our partners,” Bert Pauwels explained.
“Unlike in some markets, Belgian contractors like to buy their equipment instead of renting it. Because of this, there is a lot of competition, but importers often stay in their region. By working with partners all over the country, we have a better footprint and a competitive advantage,” he added.
New dealer headquarters
Based on this success, BLE has constructed new headquarters, three times the size of its previous facilities. The new workshop is equipped with four 16 t cranes and two grease pits.
“We needed a lot more space to store, service and repair our cranes so we had to enlarge the workshop a lot. The new facilities also provide a much more comfortable environment for our staff to work in,” Bert Pauwels said.
BLE’s order book continues to be strong and the dealer forecasts yet more growth in 2021.
“There has been a lot of sales activity already this year and the utilization rate of our rental cranes is great. Here’s to further growth and selling our 1,000th crane!” he concluded.
Source: MANITOWOC COMPANY, INC.