Signs of stability, but Snorkel still down on 2009

By Maria Hadlow24 August 2010

Darren Kell, Tanfield Group chief executive.

Darren Kell, Tanfield Group chief executive.

Despite initial signs of stability in the powered access end markets, Tanfield's powered access business reported half year results for 2010 down 12.7% on 2009 (from £21.2 m turnover in 2009 to £18.5 m in 2010). While Tanfield's other major business division, electric vehicles, has experienced a return to growth.

Darren Kell, chief executive officer of Tanfield, said, "Both of the principal business units performed in line with our expectations, during another extremely challenging period for the global economy.

"We maintained tight control of cash and moved closer towards a break-even position, while still retaining all our core people and skills. Tanfield continues to leverage its status as the world leader in commercial electric vehicles, while we are also seeing signs that the global market for aerial lifts is stabilising, albeit at very low levels."

In April 2010, Tanfield launched its new global branding for the powered access division, having marketed aerial lifts under the UpRight and Snorkel brands, from 31 August 2010 all this business will be consolidated into the Snorkel brand.

The licensing agreement with Pop-Up products is intended to place Tanfield in an advantageous position in the growing low-level access market.

Tanfield says that, "After and extremely turbulent two years, the market for aerial platforms is beginning to stabilise."

In the first half of the year Tanfield has expended its global distributor network in Latin America and Europe.

As outlined in an announcement of 9 August, Tanfield has signed non-binding Heads of Terms with Smith Electric Vehicles US Corp (SEV US). The strategy centres on an agreement to consolidate the UK arm of Smith Electric Vehicles and SEV US. SEV US has indicated that it is exploring a possible public offering of its equity securities on the NASDAQ exchange. Because of this development, the company is restricted in its ability to comment on SEV US. However, the board of directors says it will update shareholders on these discussions, as soon as it is appropriate.

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