The Gremo name officially came to an end on the 17th of April 2020 when the company was acquired by Eco Log and production was moved from Atran in southern Sweden almost 700km north to the Eco Log factory at Soderhamn.
Three of Gremo’s forwarders were destined to continue as normal with the 750F, 1050F and 1250F being added to the EcoLog range and the 1450F forwarder being discontinued as Eco Log already had a 14 tonne forwarder available. The Gremo 1058 H5 thinning harvester was being added to the Eco Log range of harvesters.
Basically, the only real difference was that the harvesting equipment was changing colour from Gremo green to the yellow and grey colours of Eco Log.
Gremo had been in existence since the 1960’s and had built up a loyal customer base with a reputation for quality and reliability. They had found their own unique niche by offering customers the perfect solution for extracting timber during thinning operations. The 750F and 1050F forwarders were perfect for first, single row thinnings and caused minimal ground disturbance and the larger capacity 1250F ideally placed for second and final thinnings.
After the takeover Eco Log announced that customers appreciated the Gremo models with around 50 machines manufactured and sold each year and that there was a good demand for the smaller scale harvesting equipment.
The last few years have seen Eco Log grow steadily and the acquisition of Gremo and Harvesting Head manufacturer SP Maskiner have played a big part in this but something has not been quite right in recent months.
In November 2022 they applied for financial reorganisation to raise new capital and the following month had a new majority shareholder, Lazarus Industriförvaltning AB.
Lazarus is an investment company specialized in operational turn-around of companies facing significant challenges. By combining access to capital with experience of operational turn-around, Lazarus can strengthen Eco Logs’ position and offering going forward. Lazarus already owns companies such as Eurosteel Nybro, AH Automation, Stockholm Repair Yard and other manufacturing industrial companies.
“We believe in the company and in the industry, and our acquisition is an important part of the new start that is now needed. We see particularly good opportunities to strengthen Eco Log’s position and we hope that we as new owners can provide both the capital and the drive that is needed,” says Martin Alsander, partner in Lazarus Industriförvaltning AB.
“We are very pleased to have new experienced owners who believe in the company and have experience of operational turn-around during complex situations. The acquisition gives Eco Log the right prerequisites to conduct long-term sustainable operations,” says Lars Bredenfeldt, board member of Eco Log Group AB.
The acquisition is conditional by the Swedish Competition Authority’s approval. Weland and Accent remain as minority shareholders of Eco Log Group AB.
In December a new CEO was appointed with a statement issued that Eco Log was in an ongoing reorganization process. Reading between the lines it was no surprise that changes were coming but the announcement on Thursday February 16th has come as a big shock.
The statement reads;
“In connection with the turn of the year 2023/2024, the forwarder models in our smaller segment will be discontinued.”
“The reason is that we are in a situation where the continued production of the affected forwarder models would require significant investments to streamline production and ensure the development of the machines and their systems. Such an investment is currently not relevant and the demand for the affected forwarder models in their current design is not high enough in relation to the investments that we see required.”
“However, we know that many people appreciate the characteristics of the machines and that there is a need for smaller forwarders on the market. Of course, we also want to be able to offer our customers a wide range of high-quality machines that cover all the varied needs that we know exist in forestry. Therefore, we will review the possibility of making the necessary investment in the long term and reintroducing one or more forwarder models in the smaller weight class.”
Which models does it apply to?
“The forwarders in our smaller segment – Eco Log 750F, Eco Log 1050F, Eco Log 1250F”
What if I have ordered a new machine that belongs to the outgoing machine models?
“Existing orders will be manufactured and delivered according to plan.”
How will aftermarket and spare parts support work?
“There are many machines out there on the market, both the original Gremo machines and the newer models from Eco Log. Of course, we will continue to provide these customers with spare parts and service and we will preserve and nurture the expertise and organization that exists around the aftermarket for the affected models for many years to come. This also means, among other things, that our workshop in Ätran, Maskinservice i Norden AB, will remain just as before.”
Is my machine still under warranty?
“The warranty terms you have today for your machine continue to apply.”
The smaller machines were hugely popular throughout Scandinavia, The Baltics and Europe and will be sorely missed as there is nothing compatible to fill the void left by their cessation.
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