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Welcome to a new year

Leigh W Sparrow, Publisher
Leigh W Sparrow, Publisher

January 1, 2018 - 2017 is behind us and we begin a fresh year with 2018. How do you think the next 12 months will pan out? Will be better or worse than the last year?

2017 saw another year of mindless terrorist violence, mostly in the Middle East and West Africa, but it also touched the west, while thousands lost their lives in mass shootings in the USA. The number of cataclysmic natural disasters - from hurricanes to floods, earthquakes and fires – seemed to be more frequent and bigger than usual.  At the same time some leading politicians displayed an ineptitude, nastiness and immaturity that reached new heights. The world seemed to be moving towards smaller nationalist enclaves after more than 70 years of moving together.  

But there were plenty of brighter things to offset this gloomy view, such as the improving global economy, the expulsion of Daesh/Isil from almost all of the territory that it once held, liberating the inhabitants from unspeakable cruelty. A record number of countries became true democracies, while terrorism and violence seemed to be everywhere the number of those affected or killed touched record lows.  National leaders with divisive agendas proved to have bites that were far weaker than their barks, and many people in positions of power who had abused their authority were finally being brought to book. Hopefully these are all reasons to be cheerful.

In the lifting industry 2017 was generally a better year, many manufacturers that suffered in 2017 increasingly reported higher revenues and improved profitability as the year progressed. Rental companies also fared better overall, while both Europe and North America saw more ‘consolidation’, with acquisitions creating several new millionaires as entrepreneurs cashed out, while the resulting mergers provided opportunities for smaller businesses to exploit.

If you need a few reminders of both the good and the not so good events that have occurred in our industry over past 12 months – including a reminder of the people that we have lost – we will publish our ‘Look Back at 2017’ feature in the January issue of Cranes & Access, which will also be available online.. The issue will also contain the annual rental rate review with reader’s reports on how 2017 went and what they anticipate for 2018.

The big international construction equipment show of 2018 is Intermat in Paris, while Vertikal Days moves to Donington Park in May. is also due for a major update and redesign during the year – so please do let us have your ideas on what features we can add and what needs changing - mail to and let us know.

Finally on behalf of all of us here at the Vertikal Press, I would like thank you for your support in 2017 and wish you a very happy, healthy, safe and prosperous year in 2018.

P.S. Don’t forget to vote in the poll, to let us know how you think 2018 will be compared to 2017.



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