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Liugong’s new era

Customers, dealers and media in attendance at LiuGong Australia’s grand opening event in Laverton North.

LiuGong Australia has officially opened its new headquarters in Melbourne. Roads & Infrastructure Magazine speaks to Shannon Bethe, Director LiuGong Australia, to learn what the milestone means for the company, as well as its customers.

LiuGong truly encompasses what it means to be a ‘global brand’. 

With nearly 70 years’ experience, the machinery manufacturer and developer has long serviced the needs of China’s infrastructure and construction sectors and has expanded to more than 300 dealers across 170 countries.

LiuGong’s versatile and robust machinery lines have been used in conditions as hot as the Sahara, to freezing temperatures in the Antarctic.

The company’s equipment range includes wheel loaders, excavators, rollers, motor graders, dozers, pavers, cold planers, skid steer loaders, backhoe loaders, cranes and more.

LiuGong is now looking to further support its strong customer base in Australia’s infrastructure and construction sectors and recently unveiled its new headquarters in Laverton North, Melbourne. 

Shannon Bethe, Director LiuGong Australia, says the move has been more than 20 years in the making.

“The plan was always to provide local support to our dealer base and distributors in the region. This is why we’ve established what we refer to as a local market support facility. It’s much more than just a parts distribution centre,” he says.

LiuGong’s senior management celebrating the grand opening.
LiuGong’s senior management celebrating the grand opening.

Melbourne central 

The establishment of the new headquarters in Laverton North doesn’t signify a new focus on the Australian market. The company has long developed purpose-built machinery for Australian applications, as Bethe explains.

“For 20 years now, we’ve developed machinery specifically for the Australian market. These developments have actually permeated into the wider network globally,” he says.

“What this new facility does is bring us closer to our distributors and our dealers. That way we can provide a higher level of support, product development and specification development for our customers and individual market segments.”

According to Deng Tao, Chairman of LiuGong Australia, establishing a local headquarters not only reinforces the company’s collaborative approach with local dealers, but also enables the company to better service local customers.

“Due to Melbourne’s geographical location and commercial environment, we are strategically positioned to further increase LiuGong’s brand awareness in Australia,” Tao says.

“This sets a foundation for us to expand our footprint in the local market by investing heavily in product improvement and after-sales support, accelerating channel coverage, and supplying high-quality machinery that helps customers achieve their environmental, social, and corporate governance goals.”

Bethe adds that the new headquarters will allow LiuGong to get on the front foot when it comes to future developments.

“It makes LiuGong a lot more proactive in developing future models that meet specific Australian requirements. We’ve now got a large contingency of factory staff now based here, so we can cater for the different specifications across different areas of the Asia Pacific region,” he says.


 

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LiuGong Australia is building upon the variety of machinery and equipment currently available to the Australian market.
LiuGong Australia is building upon the variety of machinery and equipment currently available to the Australian market.

Electric feel 

The launch of the Laverton North facility coincided with the launch of two new machines to the Australian market, the LiuGong 856H-E MAX electric loader and 9027F-E electric excavator.

Both machines represent the company’s new range of electric machinery, encompassing a variety of machinery models and classes.

Bethe says LiuGong is wanting to push the envelope when it comes to sustainable machinery development.

“We’ve placed significant investment in electric machinery. In 2023, the market will see the launch of fully electric roller models, skid steer models, wheel loaders and excavators,” he says.

“We’ve got a comprehensive range of electric machinery in the pipeline for all our customer’s needs. These machines really do offer a unique solution to the roads and civil construction market, especially when it comes to low noise units, which will be very effective for unique applications, such as tunnelling works.”

In early 2023, LiuGong delivered its first electric units to high-end markets in the United States and United Kingdom.

As part of this push, LiuGong has also recently announced the signing of a 10-year deal with CATL (Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Limited), one of the world’s largest battery developers and manufactures.

This 10-year deal will aim to further support innovations in LiuGong’s development of electric machinery and equipment.

Bethe says the grand opening of the facility is just one component that is helping to establish an exciting future for LiuGong Australia.

“I’m very excited about the scope of our product range in the future,” he says. “We’re really branching out into our global product lines to launch new equipment and machinery for a variety of industries.”

“What I’m most excited about is being able to support a premium Chinese brand, which is leading the way in market offerings.” 

This article was originally published in the July edition of our magazine. To read the magazine, click here.

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