Case Studies, Industry News

Marching ahead with Frannas

JPM Cranes has built its business on the back of Franna pick and carries. It recently took delivery of a new Franna MAC 25 SuperLift (SL).

JPM Crane is a family owned crane hire business. Since 1995, it has been servicing various industries in the Sydney and greater metropolitan areas. Operations Manager, Ryan March provides more background to the business and explains the reasons behind the new purchase.

“The business started when my father had the opportunity to purchase his own 7T Kato truck mounted crane to service a customer who had offered him the chance to start out on a long term project at the Sydney QANTAS domestic terminal.

“JPM Cranes is a proudly owned family business and Dad and the team have worked hard on growing with the intention of the next generation joining to learn from the ground up, and to continue the values and morals that has made the company a success for the past 25 years,” said March.

“Without doubt, JPM Cranes has built a reputation on the quality supply of our Franna pick and carry cranes. We have always provided a strong service to the machinery installation and relocation industry and we have long-standing relationships with the major energy providers in Sydney.

“We service such a wide variety of industries that it is difficult to put a label on what our “typical customer” looks like. The needs for each customer are assessed individually to ensure we provide the best service possible. Our long standing relationships with our customers is the reason we are in business, and we are proud to say we have been servicing a vast majority of our customers for over 20 years,” he said.

March explains how the business has come to rely on the Franna pick and carry cranes.

“It is fair to say we have built our business on the back of Franna pick and carry cranes and in our opinion the Franna is the most versatile machine in our fleet and still services the majority of our clients today. Franna cranes are a proven product and have been in our fleet for 25 years.

“We decided to add an additional MAC 25 SL for a number of reasons. The business is busy and we have capacity for an extra crane but we were also finding our customers were utilising the 25t Franna more frequently due to the additional Superlift which provides a greater lifting chart to ensure safer lifting practices. In certain configurations we have found the Superlift counterweight will give the crane an additional 50 per cent lifting capacity,” said March.

March discusses the depth of the relationship between JPM Cranes and Franna.

“My father John has had a relationship with Terex/Franna for over 20 years and we continue to appreciate the working relationship that we have with Franna. I know he will read this article so I will give a special mention to our mate and all round gentleman, Matty Mills. Unlike his stature, he has been a massive help to us over the last 10 years and we’d also like to thank Bob and Susan at the Sydney branch for their continued support with servicing and parts,” he said.

The JPM Crane fleet currently ranges from 13t to 60t in capacity and includes:

  • Liebherr LTM1060-3.1
  • Liebherr LTC1045-3.1
  • Terex MAC25 SL Frannas 25t capacity
  • Terex AT22 Franna 22t capacity
  • Terex AT20 Franna 20t capacity
  • Tadano GR130-EX city crane
  • 2 x 30t battery operated powerskate systems and specialised rigging equipment for machinery relocation.

Ryan explains how the nature of work influences the make-up of JPM Crane fleet.

“The work we conduct and our customer base is the biggest driving force behind the make-up of our fleet. We are constantly upgrading and updating our machinery to meet market demands and the requirements of our client base with plans to expand into the 100 Tonne class in the not so distant future.

“Our fleet of cranes is utilised for a variety of customers that are in all different fields and industry sectors. For example, our city crane is used for assisting in the installation and relocation/maintenance of high voltage transformers for customers such as Ausgrid & TransGrid along with the manufacturers of the transformers themselves,” said March.

March goes on to describe the type of work JPM Cranes conducts with its range of slew cranes.

“With the slew cranes you will find us working on the installation of high bay automated racking systems, in high voltage switch yards, lifting air conditioning units in and out of buildings, working on roofing projects and overhead gantry cranes, installing pre-cast concrete panels and pits and they are available for general hire.

“You will mainly see Franna pick and carry managing machinery relocation projects, overhead gantry cranes (again), servicing the energy industry, assisting our powerskate system and operating in recycling plants both new and old. On a day to day basis, we will generally cover Sydney metropolitan area, although we have previously and will continue to travel wherever our customers requires us to,” he said.

“Our commitment to customer service and fulfilling our customers’ needs has always been and will always be our main priority”. Our customers are 100 per cent of the reason we are in business and our philosophy in business is quite simple, ‘without customers you have no business’.

March discusses the processes JPM Cranes has adopted to ensure lifts are risk assessed and conducted safely.

“Conducting a site-specific meeting/ inspection before the crane arrives on site is the most effective way to envisage how the lift will take place and to ensure that when the crane arrives, the customer is fully satisfied that the job they require has been risk assessed and will be performed safely.

“But we don’t always conduct a site visit, there are numerous occasions when the phone will ring and the client needs a crane ASAP. This is where we rely on the ability of our staff to use their experience and best judgment to complete the job safely.

“We do our best to ensure all aspects of the job have been assessed and that the correct information of what we have to lift has been supplied by the client in a site-specific SWMS and lift study to suit the job,” said March.

There is plenty of experience within the JPM Cranes team including operators, riggers and dogmen, back room and office staff says March.

“The experience levels in our yard vary from five to 40 years. We have operators in our team that have more years of experience in the industry, than some of our younger guys have been alive.

“These guys are the backbone of our business, our boots on the ground, day in and day out and their dedication ensures we provide our customers with an outstanding service no matter how large or small the lift might be.

“Several of our employees have been with us for over 10 years and other team members are exceeding 15 years. For us, one of the most important aspects about employing people is that we provide an environment that puts our families first. We pride ourselves in being a business that values and recognises the hard- working attitude and efforts of all of our staff.

JPM Cranes runs a small office crew including husband and wife team John and Kathy March who have been there from the beginning.

“Mum and Dad started the business and I joined as a keen 17 year old kid with zero experience. I learned to be a dogman first, then worked up to operate every machine we have in our fleet. I knew that when I got to the position I am in now, as our General Manager and Allocator, I would get far more out of our guys if they knew I had experience in the field, compared to being sat behind a desk from day one.

“10 years later and I’ve just marked my first year at the helm. I believe we have a very bright future at JPM and look forward to building the business to suit all of our customers past and present and also grow to help us have the ability to expand into different areas of the crane industry.

“Behind the scenes, our most important team member is Office Manager Jodie Couzin. She has been with us for three years and has made a massive impact on the business, greatly improving the processes required for the day to day running and streamlining systems, from our allocations programming to invoicing and WH&S. She has been in the crane industry for over 10 years and continues to improve our business with her depth of knowledge and dedication,” he said.

After many years of volunteering his time assisting with industry issues, last year John March decided to take a step back from his roles within The Crane Industry Council of Australia (CICA).

“After many years of working with CICA on numerous industry issues, last year I decided it was time to take a step back. I will still be involved but I thought it was the right time for someone new to take the reins and bring fresh ideas and energy to the role.

“I am especially grateful to the NSW committee members for the support they have afforded me and I have been proud to serve as the Vice Chairman of the committee making contributions to various industry initiatives.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the individuals I have met, especially those I have sought advice from and who have been prepared to share their knowledge regarding the industry that has been my passion for over 40 years,” he said.”



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