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Gough Group acquires Palfinger Australia dealers

Gough Group acquires Palfinger Australia dealership

The Gough Group has signalled a new expansion phase with the successful acquisition of the Palfinger dealership in Australia and Papua New Guinea.

The New Zealand dealer for Palfinger for the past 19 years, this acquisition propels the Gough Group into the top 10 dealers globally for Palfinger AG, the listed Austrian manufacturer. Palfinger is also listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Karl Smith, Group Chief Executive for Goughs. said that the acquisition of Palfinger is a major step forward for the Gough Group, which has undergone significant changes over the past two years.

“Palfinger is the global and technological leader in the manufacture of truck-mounted Knuckle Boom Cranes, with over 150 models and a world market share of more than 30%. It also manufactures tail-lifts, marine cranes, hook loaders, truck-mounted forklifts and container handling systems,” he said.

Palfinger has service agents in all states of Australia and will be a separate division of Gough Transport Solutions, Goughs existing Australian business.

“The acquisition of Palfinger Australia is a natural and strategic move by the Gough Group to expand one of our key global dealerships to now encompass Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and the Pacific Islands.

“We received positive encouragement from Palfinger AG arising from the planned divestment by Herbert Ziegelbock, the current owner of Palfinger Australia, who has established and grown the dealership to a market leadership position since 1991.”

Herbert Ortner, Chief Executive of Palfinger AG, said Palfinger was extremely pleased to award the Australian dealership to the Gough Group.

“Herbert Ziegelbock has done an exceptional job. We viewed the Gough Group as the obvious strategic acquirer of the business, given its existing and extensive experience as the Palfinger dealer in New Zealand.

“Like ourselves, the Gough Group has a vision to continue to grow market share in both Australia and New Zealand, and we believe this combination of dealerships under one ownership makes commercial sense in this important market,” Ortner said.

Herbert Ziegelbock said that the time was right to sell the dealership and prepare it for its next growth phase and product expansion in Australia.

“I really view this as simply a change of shareholding only, as I will continue managing the business as part of my agreement with the Gough Group,” said Ziegelbock.

Karl Smith said that the Gough Group will continue to look at further opportunities that fit with its growth plans in its core dealership and agency businesses. The acquisition is effective from November 1, 2010.

Background information Palfinger AG, with headquarters in Salzburg, Austria, founded in 1932, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of hydraulic lifting, loading and handling systems. Palfinger employs 4500 staff, has sales of in excess of €500 million (2009) and was listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange in June 1999 and the New York Stock Exchange since March 2005.

The Gough Group, headquartered in Christchurch, New Zealand, was founded in 1929, and is the second oldest Caterpillar dealership outside of the USA. The Group also represents other global quality brands in the Materials Handling and Transport industries such as Palfinger NZ, Hyster Forklifts, SAF-Holland axles and running gear, and WABCO braking systems. Recently Goughs secured two major contracts to supply equipment to Solid Energy’s Stockton mine, worth approximately $120 million, plus a significant contract with Fonterra for its trailer refurbishment programme.


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