Snorkel and Xtreme Manufacturing has officially opened Ahern Chile, the new sales and service provider for the companies in Latin America, to be based in Santiago. Ahern Chile is the latest location in the Ahern International distribution group including Ahern Australia, Ahern Japan, Ahern Deutschland and Ahern Canada. The Ahern International entities are focused on the distribution of Snorkel and Xtreme Manufacturing products as well as spare parts and technical services. The Ahern International businesses do not offer equipment rental services.

Ahern Chile made its first entry into the Latin American market at ConExpo Latin America in Oct. 2015, showcasing a range of Snorkel aerial work platforms and Xtreme telehandlers. Following a strong level of interest at that show, Brody McFarland, vice president of sales for Latin America for Xtreme and Snorkel appointed Nicolas Pacifico as regional general operations manager. Pacifico has a strong background in aerial work platform sales in the region, previously leading the sales operations in Chile for Haulotte. Later the company appointed Andre Mendonca regional sales manager in Argentina, and Carlos Vegar was named parts manager.

In March 2016, Ahern Chile made its first product sale to a local customer, Metalmar, and also signed a lease on a new facility located in Santiago on Chile Route 5, which runs from the Peru border and is Chile’s longest highway. The facility has more than 2,690 square feet of modern office space as well as 21,527 square feet of workshop and warehouse space, including separate parts storage.

The Ahern Chile warehouse is now stocked with new Snorkel lifts and Xtreme telehandlers.

“Chile is the perfect location to establish our distribution for Latin America,” said McFarland. “This is a stable market with an open trade environment that makes it easy to do business. Our investment in this market has been very well received by customers so far, and we have many possibilities for expanding our business here into sectors beyond rental, including industrial and mining.

“Snorkel is already reasonably well-established in Latin America, thanks to the work of our independent distributors, however Xtreme Manufacturing is a new brand in this market. We are fortunate that some of the regions, such as Argentina, already understand the value of high-capacity telehandlers within oil applications, so we already are seeing a lot of interest in the larger Xtreme models. Lower-capacity telehandlers commonly used within construction and utilities are still a fairly new concept across Latin America, but we are already working with some of our existing customers to demonstrate the safety and productivity benefits of telehandlers over truck cranes.”

“The opening of Ahern Chile follows our business philosophy of ‘think global, act local,’ ” said Matthew Elvin, CEO of Snorkel and Xtreme Manufacturing. “This investment ensures that we are set up to not only sell the equipment, but also effectively support our Latin American customers on a local level.”

More than 100 rental and end user customers from Latin America traveled to Santiago for the event, which included machine demonstrations, an official ribbon-cutting ceremony and an evening of festivities.