SUNWARD Intelligent Equipment Group was founded in the People’s Republic of China in 1999 by Mr. He Quinghua, a charismatic and innovative Professor at the Central South University. In 2011, the company has been renamed to its current name, SUNWARD Intelligent Equipment Co., Ltd. With headquarters in Changsha City, the capital and most populous city of Hunan Province in the south central part of the People’s Republic of China.

SUNWARD started with the revolutionary innovation of Hydraulic Static Pile Driver created on the basis of a patent from Profesor He Quinghua. Soon after its creation, SUNWARD created in 2000 a tunnel drilling robot, filling gap in this field in China. One year later, in 2001, SUNWARD started the research and development of mini excavators, creating of the first small excavator in China, at a time when the market was dominated by foreign brands. A successful start since the SUNWARD multifunctional hydraulic excavator won the “First Prize in Modelling and Appearance Quality Evaluation” during the 6th Edition of BICES the same year. In 2009, SUNWARD, as a pioneer, launched the first intelligent excavator in the World, also the first hybrid excavator in China. Along those 20 years, SUNWARD gained strong experience in the design and manufacturing of excavator, ranking the company in the TOP 20 brands for excavators globally.

In the next years, SUNWARD extended its offer with many other products like Rotary Drilling Rigs, Skid Steers, Underground Mining Equipment, Crawler cranes, Aerial Work Platforms, special equipment and even Aircrafts or facial masks.

Today, SUNWARD boast over 200 products in its global range. In only 20 years, the company has cemented itself among the top players globally, generating in 2019 an annual turnover of nearly $1 Billion. The company have also been ranked in KHL Group’s Yellow table in 2019 and 2020, placing SUNWARD among the World’s top 50 Original Equipment Manufacturers. In 2020, SUNWARD ranked at number 35.

SUNWARD’s motto “Innovation Leads to Value” encapsulates the commitment to revolutionizing the machinery used across the heavy equipment industry. Further demonstrating the company’s commitment is the 22 Research and Development Centres aimed at developing engineering equipment, with over 1 000 patents registered so far. Alongside these Research and Development Centres, SUNWARD work with over 5 500 collaborators, among them over 411 fulltime R&D employees.

To accompany its vision & strategy, SUNWARD has also high but realistic ambitions globally. True to its vision, the company has set up 12 subsidiaries all around the World (Malaysia; Vietnam; Belgium; Indonesia; USA; Cambodia; Russia; South Korea; Laos; Thailand; Philippines & South Africa) as well as 5 Global offices (Italy, Vietnam, Iran, Myanmar, Bangladesh).

SUNWARD exports its product in over 100 countries thanks to a growing dealer network, carefully selected for sharing a similar vision to generate value for the customers.

SUNWARD EUROPE

In the frame of the global expansion, Europe plays a strategic role for SUNWARD, in addition to be a huge market. Even if SUNWARD started some activities in Europe in the early 2000’s, the decision to strongly penetrate the market was taken in 2015 with the opening of the European branch of the company in Beringen (Province of Limburg) in Belgium. Belgium is a strategic location for SUNWARD in order to manage operations from the heart of Europe: 45 minutes from Brussels International Airport and 60 minutes from the port of Antwerp.

The second important step in the development of the European market was taken at the beginning of 2020 with the appointment of Arnaud Berthier as C.E.O. of SUNWARD Europe. Following him, the team has been increased with local experts in all the strategic departments of the company: Sales, Service support, Parts, Administration, Marketing and so on.

SUNWARD is also growing its dealer network to be even closer to customers. Today, the company covers all Europe (including Turkey & Israel) with over 70 partners in 30 countries, and the strategy of SUNWARD is to double this network by 2022, to provide to all end customers the best technical support. Dealers are at the heart of SUNWARD’s passion for continuous improvement. Dealers’ knowledge is a real asset – their feedback from serving local market needs enhances SUNWARD’s engineering and design innovations.

Today, from its European headquarters, SUNWARD Europe can ensure rapid delivery of machines and spare parts across the European market. Sunward machines and parts enjoy exceptional availability. Machines can be delivered very quickly to local dealers, and Sunward partners benefit from quick and easy access to a large parts distribution center in Beringen. Thus, SUNWARD Europe can guarantee an availability rate of 95% for its spare parts, as well as delivery within 24 hours in all Europe.

Interview with Arnaud Berthier -CEO of SUNWARD EUROPE.

Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company?

Arnaud Berthier: SUNWARD Europe is one of the 12 subsidiaries of SUNWARD Intelligent Equipment Co., Ltd.

Our activity is mainly to manage the distribution of a construction equipment manufactured by the mother company SUNWARD Intelligent Equipment Co., Ltd through the management of a growing distribution network.

From its European headquarters, SUNWARD Europe also ensure delivery of spare parts across the European market.

Additionally, in its European Headquarters, SUNWARD has the capability of customizing the machines for the European market: fitting of all necessary attachments and options like tilt rotators, lubrification systems, Telematics systems, etc.

E.E: What’s the news for 2021 about new products?

A.B: In 2021, SUWNARD plans to introduce in Europe of a lot of new models, all over the year:

  • Excavators: a 1.7 to mini-excavators. Full new design, standard with extendable lower frame, and available with cab or canopy. Main targeted markets: Germany, UK, North and Eastern Europe;
  • Excavators: a 2 piece boom version of our new 9 to model SWE90UF;
  • Loaders: a 4.5 tracked compact loaders, fully equipped with high flow as a standard;
  • Arial work platforms: a full range with 5 models, with 6 meters / 8 meters / 10 meters / 12 meters / 14 meters working height;
  • Wheeled excavators: a 15 to wheeled excavators, first model (end of the year) of a full range of WEX, coming up in 2022;
  • Drilling rigs: first introduction in Europe of 3 models to Drilling riggs fitted with Stage 5 engine.

More to disclose later! It will be a very dynamic year for SUNWARD.

E.E: What are the ranges of traded products?

A.B: In EUROPE, SUWNARD currently offers a growing range of machines: excavators, skid steers, aerial work platforms, crawler cranes and drilling rigs.

The common points for all those equipment is to provide Best Value for Money products to Dealers & customers in Europe. SUNWARD represents the “Smart Choice”, offering to customers an excellent performance/price ratio, and the best local service thanks to its dealer network.

Excavators

Ranking among the top 20 excavator enterprises in the world, SUNWARD’s excavators boast a variety of useful features. The range starts at 0.8 ton ‘mini diggers’ through to a massive 21 tons. There is a product in this range to suit every earthmoving need.

SUNWARD mini and compact excavators are designed with operator ease in mind. The machines are optimized to work in smaller spaces and on complicated jobsites without compromising on comfort. Further, many of the mini and compact SUNWARD excavators have zero tail swing and extended boom swing to enable optimized work in a tight working area. All Excavator models in the mini and compact excavator range feature Yanmar engines with the exception of the SWE35UF and SWE60UF, both of which feature Kubota engines. By the way, components used in all our products are from World-class Premium brands like KYB, Flutek, Eaton, Nachi, Bosch RexRot.

The SUNWARD range of Excavators feature a number of useful extras as standard like:

  • Because customer need flexibility, SUNWARD excavators are equipped with hydraulic quick hitch line and double acting hydraulic circuits…as standard (from SWE18UF);
  • Because operators need to stay safe day and night, SUNWARD excavators are equipped with 4 perfectly positioned LED lights, as standard;
  • Because operating comfort is essential, SUNWARD excavators offer the facility of proportional joystick control…as standard (right hand side or dual depending on model);
  • Because operating cost is a priority, SUNWARD excavators feature an automatic idle system…as standard (from SWE35UF).

SUNWARD excavators have already proved popular in number of European markets because SUNWARD offers very good value for money. SUNWARD is even very successful in Central and Easter Europe markets being already leader of mini and compact excavators in Hungary and Romania, and among the most popular supplier for the same equipment in Slovenia, Slovakia, and Scandinavia.

Western markets like Italy, France, Germany, Scandinavia are now growing fast thanks to an increasing number of dealers.  SUNWARD is also setting solid distribution structures in UK, Spain, Portugal, BENELUX with already promising results.

Skid steer loaders

SUNWARD skid steer loaders have been used across a variety of sectors, providing operators with an efficient and flexible work tool in smaller spaces. The machines have been independently developed by SUNWARD Intelligent. Each wheeled skid steer is equipped with a reliable Kubota engine. Currently, SUNWARD offers in Europe 3 models from 2.8t to 4.5t: the range starts with the SWL 2820 (2,83t), followed by the SWL 3230 (3,2t) and finally the SWL4538 (4,5t).

Crawler cranes

SUNWARD crawler cranes offer the versatile combination of heavy-duty telescopic booms mounted on an undercarriage with a set of crawlers, with compact dimensions.

They are perfect for heavy lifting work with little set-up, with capability of traveling with a heavy load. Currently, SUNWARD has 2 models in its offer, the SWTC5D & the SWTC10, respectively with Yanmar & Cummins engines, both meeting the Euro Stage V emission standards.

Drilling rigs

SUNWARD is one of the first companies developing rotary drilling rigs in China, and it was one of the core business of SUNWARD from the very beginning. Through continuous technological innovation and iteration, SUNWARD has developed a complete range of drilling rigs, recognized in the industry for their performance, reliability and stability with low cost.

Aerial work platforms

Arriving on the market at the end of 2020 is the SUNWARD range of Aerial Work Platforms. Featuring a compact structure and simple operation, the range will increase available work area and allowing operators to work at a maximum height of 14 meters. The high strength scissor structure and safe-locking door ensure operator safety. These machines have a rated load of 320 kg, allowing for a variety of uses across construction sectors.

E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active?

A.B: Interest in SUNWARD is growing and reinforces its position in all European markets:

SUNWARD’s distribution network is growing fast with over 70 partners already in Europe (territory incl. Turkey & Israel).

SUNWARD is appealing to customers in all Europe because it offers very good value for money. Initially SUNWARD was very good in Central and Eastern Europe markets, and still is, but Western markets like Italy, France, Germany, Scandinavia are now growing very fast. That’s reason why the company will sell 40 % units more than in 2019.

If COVID time is a difficult time for most of players in Europe, it is more an opportunity for SUNWARD because our offer is very attractive:

  • good value for money;
  • high ROI.

E.E: What can you tell us about market trends?

A.B: With no surprise, market trends in terms of units sold and dynamism are negatively impacted by COVID. Overall the construction activity despite boost from many governments is declining.

As an example, the mini excavator and midi excavator segments, which are the biggest market in Europe in terms of volume of Construction Equipment, should decline by 10 to 15% in 2020 against 2019.

But SUNWARD keeps on growing at a time when the trend is overall not favourable.

In this declining market, SUNWARD, by having increased its sales by 40%, had significantly increased its position and market shares everywhere in Europe.

This is the result of SUNWARD Product and Sales network strategy, started a few years ago from our European Head Quarters of Beringen (Belgium).

E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed?

A.B: SUNWARD, true to its motto INNOVATION LEADS TO VALUE, is concentrating most of its efforts in R&D. Further demonstrating the company’s commitment is the 22 Research and Development Centres aimed at developing engineering equipment, with over 1 000 patents registered so far. Alongside these Research and Development Centres, SUNWARD work with over 5 500 collaborators, among them over 411 fulltime R&D employees.

So innovation is everywhere in our products

As an example of SUNWARD’s innovation capabilities, the modern SUNWARD hydraulic cranes SWTC05 and SWTC10.

With their high level specifications, and compactness, our hydraulic cranes can be used in many sectors : electric power construction, bridge construction, petrochemical industry, and other industries.

The strength of SUNWARD is also to deliver high quality machineries, with very affordable price, but more fully equipped as standard than most of others.

That’s why SUNWARD is the “Smartest Choice” on European market ! The best ratio “Quality / Price” and the right service support thanks to a growing Dealer network everywhere in Europe!

Example of equipment with are standard on most of SUNWARD excavators:

  • Modern Touchable digital monitor (user data + incident warning);
  • All necessary auxiliary hydraulic circuits to end arm: to use all types of hydraulic quick couplers and all types of attachments;
  • Proportional joystick(s);
  • Auto-shift travelling system;
  • Engine Auto-idle system;
  • Working lights;
  • Beacon;
  • Radio etc.

E.E: What estimations do you have for 2021?

A.B: We have ambitious but realistic target for 2021:

  • Keep on developing our dealer network;
  • Increase sales & market share in all European markets;
  • New product launches mean also new markets and customers.

To accompany the achievement of the target, SUNWARD Europe will also invest in 2 areas:

  • Develop our team;
  • Move our Headquarters (we will stay in the same area as we are today).

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