Palfinger finds its niche at AWRE

Palfinger’s new NSW Key Account Manager Seth Ozbas found the company’s DINO T22A unit was in high demand at the Australasian Waste and Recycling Expo.

When Palfinger began exploring which of its hookloader units to showcase at the Australasian Waste and Recycling Expo (AWRE), the team identified its DINO T22A hookloaders as the ideal fit.

The conference’s NSW-centric location meant that a hookloader with the capacity for various rail widths and hydraulically adjustable hook heights was highly sought after, inspiring the team to display the unit on the show floor.

Supplied with either a hydraulically adjustable arm or an articulating arm, the DINO T22A is ideal for various waste streams, from construction and demolition waste to organics.

Palfinger clients are handling a range of challenging waste streams and the company recognises that containers vary in design, with multiple rail widths and assorted hook heights creating logistical challenges.

Having a single hookloader that can collect most containers is a strong value proposition for Palfinger’s diverse range of customers in NSW.

Holding AWRE in October timed well with new NSW Key Account Manager Seth Ozbas having just come on board.

Joining Palfinger in August, Seth was keen to meet and greet Palfinger’s new and existing customers.

His main responsibilities are to ensure Palfinger maintains its strong connections with its existing NSW customer base, while also working to forge new relationships with waste operations and fleet managers.

With more than 10 years’ experience in mining and construction, Seth is an expert in hydraulic equipment.

Seth explains he first moved to Australia last year where he worked for Wam Australia – a company based in Italy manufacturing bulk handling equipment.

From there, he stumbled upon Palfinger after discovering their products online and was immediately impressed with their quality of build.

He says he is determined to ensure Palfinger’s strong reputation in the cranes sector is equally as well-known in waste management, an area Seth considers a personal passion.

“Waste management is an established industry, experiencing rapid growth as consumer sentiment shifts towards reducing our impact on the planet,” Seth says.

“NSW is an interesting state and I look forward to learning more about our various customers and applications.”

Seth says that the majority of Palfinger’s diverse range of NSW customers are in the Sydney CBD or western suburbs, with a number also spread across regional areas, an area he hopes to continue to grow.

While he is new to the waste industry, he says AWRE has helped him forge connections with new and prospective customers.

Seth says the DINO T22A has been an easy unit to sell in NSW, given the demand to carry a variety of containers.

“Waste managers are knowledgeable and they know what they want most of the time, so it’s about combining our technical capabilities to suit their needs,” Seth explains.

Glen Woodrow, Hookloader and Skip Loader Account Manager at Palfinger, says the DINO T22A hookloaders are unique to Australia.

“We manufacture products that are bespoke – it’s as simple as that. This hookloader is not sold anywhere else in the world because of our unique customers needs, particularly in NSW,” Glen says.

He says that historical designs have had limited clearance on the front of the bin due to a large hook, an issue the DINO eliminates.

Glen explains the DINO’s hydraulically adjustable hook will pick up any bin at any rail width or height from 1360 to 1650 millimetres. As an added benefit, the unit comprises front bin locks for seven points of contact ensuring NSW customers can secure their loads safely.

The colour scheme of black and yellow is a design that stands out on the AWRE floor, complementing Palfinger’s red backdrop and brand promise of lifetime excellence.

Glen explains that the units all originate from France and can be customised to suit customer’s colour needs.

Augmenting the unit is Palfinger’s PAD controls – an intelligent system that aims to provide users better information and improve safety. The controls include features such as automatic cycle for increased safety and additional information, including real-time record data and information displayed on the truck dash.

“Through our digitisation process, Palfinger is looking to make its units easier, smarter and faster. The new process removes all relays out of the control circuitry, so it’s quite a maintenance-free system,” Glen explains.

He says the PAD control box is an intelligent system and will inform users if the unit is not set up correctly.

“If you’re trying to tip and have the front bin locks in instead of out, it won’t go into tip mode,” Glen says.

“If the vehicle is not ready to travel and you have a bin unlocked, the audible warning will tell you it’s not safe to travel, even if you disconnect the PTO.”

He says that PAD controls are offered in both the T22A articulated DINO unit for low loading and T22T – a telescopic unit able to pick up every bin on the market.

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Team hookloader: Palfinger

Waste Management Review speaks with the Palfinger hookloader team about working together to achieve maximum payloads.

Industrial conglomerate Sime Darby’s recent acquisition of Gough Group’s New Zealand and Australian operations led to a change of ownership for hydraulic lifting and handling company Palfinger.

The change came at a time of growth for the Australian arm of the company, which has been investing in and expanding its hookloader capabilities over the past three years.

According to Glen Woodrow, Palfinger Queensland and Northern Territory Account Manager, Palfinger’s Australian hookloader operations have traditionally played second fiddle to the company’s higher-profile crane manufacturing business.

“Globally Palfinger is renowned for its cranes, and while our hookloaders have always been just as structurally and operationally impressive, it’s only over the last few years that we have dedicated time and resources to grow this vital part of the Palfinger Australia business,” Glen says.

“The waste industry has been central to growth for us. Additionally, working with councils on tailored transport and waste solutions has really expanded our knowledge of the sector.”   

Palfinger brought Glen on as National Account Manager Hooks and Skips three years ago to expand its hookloader operations. He says that prior to his appointment, Palfinger didn’t have a dedicated hookloader team.

“I immediately worked with the developed hookloader business plan, which the team has been successfully using ever since,” he says.

“The central ideas are collaboration and knowledge transfer, which helps us deliver maximum payloads for clients, and as a result, maintain long-term relationships. Tailoring the business plan to suit both demographic and geographic demands has been part of the key to our success.”

To continue this momentum Palfinger Australia has expanded its national footprint, with two additional team members joining the business over the past two years.

They are Stuart Cameron, who oversees Tasmania, Victoria and South Australia, and Seth Ozbas, who joined the team four months ago to run New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory.

Palfinger’s Western Australian interests are supported by Perth-based Palfinger crane salesman Mick Stone, completing the national field coverage.

The four account managers work closely together and for every unit sold, produce a detailed specification and legal loading sheet that provides clients with a complete understanding of each build.

“We debrief weekly on what went well with the sale, potential room for improvement and overall customer satisfaction. This means other team members can learn from our experience and have similar wins themselves,” Glen says.

Glen says Palfinger’s customer engagement in the preparatory stage is another critical success factor of Palfinger’s hookloader business plan.

“We work hard to make sure that when we deliver a hookloader, it’s right the first time. It’s a very bespoke process with considerable research involved – rarely are two Palfinger hookloaders the same,” Glen says.

“I like to think we turn customers into clients.”

Stuart says an increased ability to manage national accounts is a key benefit of having dedicated teams in each state.

“When a supplier’s operations aren’t centralised, problems can arise, such as red tape surrounding where an order was originally placed and where the servicing will occur. But for us, this isn’t a problem. Palfinger always has an expert available to manage the situation in every state,” he says.

Stuart says this is further supported by an extensive list of 37 fully trained service partners located throughout Australia.

Before joining the Palfinger team, Stuart worked for another hookloader manufacturer. He says while there are many good products on the market, Palfinger’s hookloaders stand out for their durability and strength.

“I know the market well and can confidently say that our top-quality European products are the best hookloaders available,” Stuart says.

“I was recently involved in fitting a 20-year-old Palfinger hookloader to a brand-new Scania because the hookloader was still operating at an optimum level. Palfinger can provide that kind of longevity.”

Seth, the newest member of the hookloader team, expressed similar sentiments, saying he is impressed with the quality of the product and streamlined nature of Palfinger’s operations.

He adds that while he covers the entire New South Wales and ACT region, he spends most of his time in Sydney’s western suburbs.

“Most waste and recycling companies are in Sydney, so I have spent the last few months meeting with clients and cold calling potential prospects,” Seth says.

“I want to make sure our clients feel comfortable to call me whenever they have a challenging opportunity, so I can arrange a quote on a new product or organise a service on existing equipment.”

According to Seth, a key benefit of the multipronged Palfinger sales strategy is the ability to quickly access all previous sales and equipment data.

“When I’m speaking with a client who needs specific information about a product, I am able to call the responsible person who provides the information straight away, rather than wasting time scanning through documents,” he says.

“The team is really invested in working together to grow and expand Australian hookloader market.”

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