Nabil Al Zahlawi, managing director at regional Manitowoc dealer NFT, said his company has rented and sold cranes to companies working on a wide range of projects in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and other emirates in the UAE.
"Construction activity in the UAE remains high with a large number of developments underway," he said. "There are a number of ambitious projects taking shape and with demanding work schedules contractors are looking for powerful and reliable cranes backed by strong service."
On the Capital Plaza development in Abu Dhabi there are six Potain MR 160 C luffing jib tower cranes. Main contractor Arabian Construction Company purchased them from NFT. Capacity is 10 tonnes and all have the maximum 50 m jib.
After climbing throughout the project the final hook height of the tallest crane will be nearly 200 m. The cranes are handling steel rebar, formwork and other structural components on the development that will have an office tower, a hotel and a residential tower.
Another project using Potain luffers is the Marina 101 skyscraper under construction in Dubai. An MR 160 C and an MCR 225 A are working together. The MR 160 C is working at a free standing height of 54.2 m with 45 m of jib, while the 14 t capacity MCR 225 A also has 45 m of jib.
As on the Capital Plaza development, the Potain cranes are lifting a variety of general building materials and are climbing as the project grows.
Main contractor TAV Construction chose to purchase rather than rent the cranes from NFT. Marina 101 will reach a height of 412 m and 101 storeys. It will have 324 hotel rooms and 506 residential units.
When construction finishes in 2010 it will be the second tallest residential skyscraper in the world. Only two metres taller, the Princess Tower, another skyscraper under construction in Dubai that also uses a Potain tower crane, an MR 160 C, will be the tallest.
Abu Dhabi-based NFT has a stock of more than 25,000 Potain spare parts and has 30 factory trained technicians to support its cranes. According to Nabil Al Zahlawi, NFT's commitment to customer service is one of the cornerstones of its success.
"In this kind of environment, service becomes essential so it is a real focus of our business and is always a high priority for us," he said.
"Of course, the Potain name is well-known here and trusted and, because we have built our fleet of cranes over the past 12 years, we have been able to supply cranes quickly, which is another key requirement for working in this market."