PROPLATE AND FUWA – A SUCCESSFUL PARTNERSHIP
The world’s leading crane manufacturers entrust their strap production to Proplate. One of them is China’s oldest crane manufacturer, FUWA, a company that has long been setting the standard for cranes built in China. “We mainly chose Proplate as a partner for their world-leading cutting technology and the high product quality, as the straps are made from high-strength steel with a high degree of hardness,” says Meng Xiangming, Head of Purchasing at FUWA’s marketing department.
WORLD-LEADING TECHNOLOGY SAFEGUARDS QUALITY
May 19, 2010 marked the launch of FUWA’s QUY1250 – a 1,250-ton crane on caterpillar treads. It is an impressive machine and Proplate’s straps play an important role. The straps have to withstand enormous strains in order to guarantee a high level of safety and lifting capacity. Proplate, which already manufactures straps for another heavy FUWA crane, the QUY750, has the required technology.
We met Meng Xiangming and Luo Yanfeng, Deputy Director of Dalian Technology Division, and project manager for the QUY1250, to talk about the partnership between FUWA and Proplate.
“We are unable to manufacture the straps ourselves – quite simply the metal plate that’s needed is too thick. We have neither the knowledge nor the facilities for this type of production,” says Luo.
Meng emphasizes that Proplate’s advanced technology is one of the main reasons behind the partnership:
“Cutting with gas and plasma in water is a world-leading technology, and it guarantees straps of excellent quality. On the whole, however, we only have praise for Proplate for their attitude, responsiveness and feedback, as well as the way their personnel communicate.”
“FUWA expects very high quality and good service from Proplate. We also want to be able to further develop the quality of straps for all types of cranes on caterpillar treads. In the short term, we want Proplate to deliver straps and new solutions for straps which we do not have the capacity to make ourselves. In the longer term, we want to gain an in-depth understanding of each other’s technologies, making it possible to work together and evolve.”
“The most important factor for us when it comes to cranes is safety,” asserts Meng. “In comparison, customers’ needs come second because the quantity or number of tons pales into insignificance. What Proplate contributes may not be obvious to all end customers, because they do not see straps as the critical factor they should be.
“We manufacture machines with confidence because we are at the cutting edge – In fact FUWA is ahead of its two largest competitors in terms of developing heavy cranes on caterpillar treads.”
The Chinese market is growing at a tremendous rate. What are the most important success factors in China?
“Good quality, low price, good function and customer service,” answers Luo quickly. “Lead times for straps are a challenge because FUWA’s customers usually request a three-month lead time for a finished crane.”
Luo says that nevertheless, FUWA has set its own pace when it comes to developing its products and that Proplate has the right approach:
“As one of our suppliers of advanced products and services, Proplate must also fulfill FUWA’s demands. Proplate has managed to take its advanced technology concept to the Chinese market, and is contributing to the future development of heavy cranes in China. In other words, FUWA’s success is Proplate’s success.”