Potain has led the world in tower crane and self-erecting crane design and manufacturing since 1928. Potain cranes are known around the world for their lifting power, reliability, and innovative designs. The company builds more than 60 different models of tower cranes to fit a wide variety of job sites & applications: high-capacity top slewing cranes on infrastructure jobs, luffing jib cranes that construct “supertall” skyscrapers, topless cranes reshaping our urban environment and Hup self-erecting cranes transforming residential construction.

Known for their ease of use, efficient transport and quick erection times, there are many reasons why Potain tower cranes are shaping skylines across the globe.

Interview with Dominique Leullier, Marketing Director Europe, Manitowoc Crane Group France.

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

Dominique Leullier: Main areas of activity of Potain are the construction of a wide range top slewing tower cranes (luffers and topless) and self-erecting cranes with their transport axle. The company is present worldwide with factories in China, India, Portugal, Italy and France. In addition to the production and sales activity of news cranes, the company focus on service and customer satisfaction. To achieve this goal, Potain has a very extensive and well-trained aftersales service team, a huge and modern spare parts logistic center based in France and delivering parts worldwide and a dense and professional distribution network all around the globe. To satisfy customer needs and support its distribution network Potain proposes also cranes for rent and used cranes.

The company is also committed in a strong engagement in terms of sustainability, with several initiatives such as waste reduction, reduction of electricity consumption, implementation of solar panels and our EnCORE program for crane refurbishment, which gives a second life to a used crane. To highlight these efforts, the Manitowoc company to which Potain belongs has for a 2nd year running been recognized by Newsweek as one of America’s Most Responsible Companies.

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

D.L: Potain CONNECT digital platform. Thanks to an app-based system, this platform revolutionizes the customer experience by enabling remote monitoring of their equipment and offers fleet managers and users the possibility of viewing crane data in real time, receiving alerts, exchanging data and much more thanks to features that will be progressively added in the coming months.

Potain launched also 2 new top slewing cranes. The luffing jib crane MR 229 and the topless city crane MDT 159.

The Potain MR 229 is a 14 t maximum capacity crane which can lift 2.7 t at 55 m. This crane is the first of a new generation of Potain luffing jib tower cranes to feature Manitowoc’s CCS (Crane Control System) and the new Potain CONNECT telematics offering. Other main benefit is the easiness of the crane installation. The out-of-service radius is between 10 and 12 m, approximately 5 to 10 m less than equivalent cranes in this category. 

The MDT 159, new addition to the Potain MDT City range is a 6 t maximum capacity crane, and 1,75 t at its maximum jib radius of 60 m. In addition to all ergonomic features common to all cranes from the MDT City range, this crane is offered with a new automatic trolley, the reeving change is performed independently by the crane operator in the cab (no more need for a ground technician). This makes this crane even easier to operate. The crane is, like the MR 229, also equipped with Potain CONNECT, the new digital platform of Potain.

In terms of self-erecting cranes, Potain recently launches Evy 30-23 4 t. The crane is specifically engineered for home construction and residential building construction of up to three stories in height. The crane offers a simple setup procedure and requires less manual operation than similar cranes on the market. It boasts an impressive 4 t maximum capacity and 1 t capacity from the tip of its substantial 30 m jib, enabling precise handling of heavy loads within an extensive radius. Variable jib positions of 10, 20, or 30 degrees deliver an impressive 35 m maximum height under hook with a 30-degree raised jib.

E.E: What are the ranges of products?

D.L: As far as new tower cranes are concerned, we have within the top slewing cranes a luffing jib crane range lasting from 8 t max capacity up to 32 t and a standard top slewing range starting from 2.5 t max capacity up to 80 t. In addition, our “Lift Solutions” team also provides customized cranes based on specific requests and for special applications.  

On the self-erecting side, we have cranes from 1.8 t up to 8 t max capacity, the larger ones offering variable height thanks to telescoping lattice mast.

E.E: What is the state of the market where you are currently active?

D.L: Potain tower cranes are very popular worldwide with a good service and a strong dealer footprint worldwide. The demand for tower cranes differs, depending on the region of the world. As of today, the activity of new crane sales is slowing down in the main countries in Europe. For other region like North America, Middle East, India or some countries in Asia, the demand remain at a good level. Huge projects and investments planned mainly in the Middle East will strongly support the demand of big tower cranes regardless Topless or luffers.

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

D.L: As far as Potain tower cranes are concerned, all our products and services are known for being innovative and offering the best customer experience. To name one which we are introducing now, I would mention what we are offering related to the crane digitalization via our new telematic platform Potain CONNECT. But we are also constantly improving our technical and services solutions to always anticipate customer’s needs.

E.E: What estimations do you have for the beginning of 2024?

D.L: Estimation for 2024 are so far aligned with the last quarter 2023 and we don’t for see a big improvement along the year.