Terex Cranes' revenues for the third quarter of the year came to US$ 455 million, down 38% on the same period last year. Despite the drop, the division returned a modest operating profit of US$ 5.4 million.
A company statement said sales of rough terrains, tower cranes and lower capacity all terrain cranes had bourn the brunt of the downturn. In contrast, demand continued for high capacity crawler and all terrain cranes, thanks to favourable conditions in end markets such as infrastructure construction and energy-related projects.
Terex Cranes order backlog also remained healthy at US$ 1.02 billion - equivalent to 6.7 months' production at current levels. However, Terex said the backlog was some 48% lower than it was at the end of September 2008. Again, lower demand for lower capacity cranes was the main reason for this, with a much more healthy order position for heavier lifters.
Despite the difficulties for Terex Cranes, it remained the shining star for the group as a whole. The third quarter saw Terex make a net loss of US$ 103 million, compared to a profit of US$ 94 million in the same period last year. Sales for the three-month period were down 51% to US$ 1.23 billion, compared to US$ 2.51 billion a year ago.
Although the company's mining equipment business made an operating profit of US$ 12.1 million, this and the contribution from Terex Cranes was more than wiped-out by a US$ 60 million loss from the company's construction equipment division and a US$ 50 million loss for Genie, its aerial work platform business.
As well as being the biggest division in terms of revenues - representing 37% of sales - Terex Cranes also dominated Terex's order book. The division's US$ 1.03 billion backlog represents two thirds of Terex's total US$ 1.52 billion order book.