Since its beginnings as a humble rope-maker in 1880, the family-owned Carl Stahl has gone from strength to strength, offering lifting and rope solutions and services to companies around the world, and has expertise when it comes to the unique challenges and demands posed by the oil and gas sector. The company's Oliver Hommel explains more.
Could you provide a brief history and background to Carl Stahl?
Oliver Hommel: Carl Stahl started out in 1880 as a small rope-maker specialising in agricultural products, serving only local customers. Today, it has become a global enterprise, with 1,652 employees operating from 65 subsidiaries in Europe, North America, Asia and the Middle East, and a turnover of €289 million in 2014. The divisions of the family-owned company are material handling, architecture, technocables, personal protective equipment for the prevention of falls and the academy.
Sales figures prove that there is a strong demand for Carl Stahl products all over the world. In recent years, figures regarding turnover, subsidiaries and staff have been continuously rising. In the 1990s, particularly, the company grew rapidly, and that growth continues today. A wider range of products and services has contributed considerably to this success, and also allowed the development of new markets and target groups. The number of Carl Stahl locations worldwide has multiplied tenfold in the past 40 years, mainly through acquisitions and takeovers, but also by founding new subsidiaries.
What lifting solutions do you provide your clients in the oil and gas sector?
Carl Stahl offers a wide range of high-quality lifting products and solutions such as chain blocks, lever hoists, crane systems, lifting clamps, lifting magnets, wire rope slings, chain slings, roundslings, webbing slings, crane wire ropes, hydraulic cylinders and cargo lashing to name just a few. Many of these items are stocked in our warehouses and are available immediately. We stock all current crane and industrial wire rope types in different diameters, available in OEM-quality and high-grade alternatives from leading European manufacturers.
Around the globe, the Carl Stahl Group is committed to fall protection in all industrial sectors and the most diverse work environments. This commitment requires close cooperation with specialised suppliers, offering state-of-the-art-technology and finding custom-made solutions for all safety standards. The combined performance of the international Carl Stahl Group and the cooperation with the most recognised manufacturers of safety technology results in a comprehensive range of fall protection and personal protective equipment. Apart from the equipment and fall protection systems, the personal safety equipment division also offers technical advice, assembly of fall protection systems, expert inspections and special training.
Are your products suitable for onshore and offshore environments?
Yes, they are in general but always depending on the customer's requirements. Carl Stahl has partnerships with many well-known manufacturers of lifting products like RUD, SpanSet, HiForce and many others that are, in some cases, leading companies in their sector. Some of our subsidiaries, like in Norway, have long experience in serving customers in offshore environments, not only in offering products but also services such as seminars, or testing and repair.
How does Carl Stahl go about collaborating with it customers? What value-added services do you offer them?
With its well-educated staff, its long experience and its worldwide presence, Carl Stahl is where the customers need us to be. Our sales teams foster a deep contact with every one of the customers in order to provide them the best solutions for their lifting requirements. As well as delivering products, Carl Stahl also offers after-sales services such as seminars in all fields of lifting equipment, or a test and repair service for our products. The academy is certified to ISO 9001 and has more than 1,000 participants each year. Our renowned instructors come from the technical and industrial practice, and ensure a permanently high quality level for our academy. Our UK subsidiary, Carl Stahl Evita, also offers training on a global basis.
What's next on the horizon for Carl Stahl? Are there any plans in place to extend your global market coverage?
Our main goal is to develop the local markets on a broad basis to establish Carl Stahl as the market leader - so the oil and gas sector is just part of our general effort to increase our sales.