Jungheinrich AG and Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America Inc. (MCFA) announced a joint North American agreement under which MCFA will be the exclusive distributor of Jungheinrich's branded equipment across the continent starting in January. As part of the deal, Jungheinrich will design products that will be manufactured by MCFA.
In addition, Jungheinrich will offer some of its Class 1 product line for sale under the Cat lift-truck brand and Class 3 products under the Mitsubishi lift-truck brand, the companies said in a joint statement.
The Cat lift-truck line, the companies said, will now focus on sit-down Class 1, 4, and 5 counterbalanced models. The Jungheinrich line will be offered for narrow-aisle Class 2 and 3 products as well as some select Class 1 models typically used in warehousing and distribution applications, according to the companies. The range of Mitsubishi forklift trucks offered through North American dealers will not change.
"Sales of Jungheinrich products through the MCFA distribution network open up wonderful opportunities to the Jungheinrich brand in North America and strengthens our competitive position, with MCFA benefiting from our warehousing expertise in exchange," said Hans-Georg Frey, chairman of Jungheinrich's board of management, in a statement.
"Bringing Cat lift trucks and Jungheinrich products together through one distribution network gives our customers the best of both worlds," said Jeff Rufener, MCFA's vice president of marketing, in the statement. "Cat Lift Trucks and Jungheinrich are global leaders in their product categories. Our customers can now pick one or both of the brands to serve their needs, delivered and supported by MCFA dealers; the industry's best distribution network."
As part of the agreement, Jungheinrich will establish a design center on MCFA's campus in Houston. The Houston Design Center will focus on development of a new range of warehouse products designed for and manufactured in North America, and will be staffed by Jungheinrich personnel, the companies said.
The current Jungheinrich sales and service operations will cease effective Dec. 31, 2009. The Jungheinrich facility in Richmond, Va., will close in 2010.