Liebherr reported container crane, mobile harbour crane (MHC) and reachstacker business showed stable development in 2017 despite its maritime cranes division registering a 10% fall in revenue.
The divisions’ revenue totalled €733m, a downturn of €83m from 2016, but the Switzerland-based company said container crane sales were strong in the American market, while MHC sales performed well in South America and Europe.
Liebherr stated: “The global market for mobile harbour cranes was marked by concentration tendencies, new competitors entering the market and low-level growth.
“Despite these conditions, Liebherr further established its position as the global market leader.”
One particular highlight for the container cranes sector was the delivery of five Megamax ship-to-shore (STS) cranes to Hamburg, Germany.
Other notable deliveries include three STS cranes delivered to Crowley’s terminal in Puerto Rico, two electric rubber-tyred gantry (eRTG) cranes sent to Russia and three automated RTGs delivered to the US.
The LRS 545-31 reachstacker underwent further development last year and the machine is now available to customers in additional variations.
Despite the progress in the container segment, Liebherr suffered financially due to a “difficult business climate”.
The company reported the demand for ship cranes was low due to tonnage overcapacities and the lull in new vessel orders that accompanied this, while the oversupply of crude oil also led to low levels of investment in offshore cranes.
The company said it expected overcapacities and low oil prices to continue to influence market conditions for the maritime cranes sector in 2018, and expects sales to remain around 2017 levels.