Construction market slowdown and oversupply affect vehicle body manufacturers
Gorica Industries sees increasing demand for acid tankers and frac tanks in the oil and gas industry, and aluminium animal feed bulkers and grain tipping semi-trailers in the animal feed industry.
“2018 was a difficult year for the truck bodybuilding and trailer manufacturing industries, which suffered due to the overall slowdown in the GCC markets and fall in demand from the construction industry. Furthermore, the lack of legislation to limit gross vehicle weight and to regulate the import of second-hand trailers have made it more difficult to compete in the UAE market, which also faces oversupply,” says Ivan Fornazaric, managing director of the UAE-based Gorica Group.
Ivan Fornazaric, managing director, Gorica Group.
However, new opportunities have emerged for Gorica. Outside its core GCC markets, Gorica has been receiving inquiries from Iraq. Demand from the oil and gas industry has been increasing for acid tankers and frac tanks. Gorica has been investing in the product development of trailers and bodies for emerging applications such as aluminium tankers. During 2018–19, the company also launched a number of new products including aluminium animal feed bulkers, aluminium grain tipping semi-trailers, as well as special cargo trailers with power rollers for Emirates Airlines for the transportation of Airbus A380 engines.
The animal feed industry, particularly, has been responsive to aluminium trailers. “Some markets are gradually adopting aluminium as an alternative to steel. We have been receiving orders from the animal feed industry for aluminium animal feed bulkers and aluminium tipping trailers. Although aluminium has a very small portion of the market, it has the potential for applications in fuel and food transport vehicles,” says Fornazaric.
The Gorica Group comprises four companies in three GCC countries. The group's main manufacturing unit, Gorica Industries, has its headquarters in Dubai with three production facilities in Jebel Ali Industrial Zone 2, and a branch in Dubai Investments City with two additional production facilities.
Gorica Industries manufactures a complete range of cargo trailers, semi-trailers, fuel/water/sewage/jetting tankers, dry bulk tankers, aluminium tankers/bulkers, transit cement mixers, municipality equipment, oil field equipment along with pressurized vessels, refrigerated semi-trailers and frigo bodies across the Middle East and Africa.
A second member of Gorica Group is Gorica Vehicles & Co, based in Muscat, Oman, which also has a branch office in Salalah. Gorica also has a sales office in Kuwait. Another subsidiary is Gotrade, which is the group’s trading arm, spare parts and after-sales company based in Dubai and has a branch office in Abu Dhabi.
Recently, Gorica Group established a new company named United Trailers Company in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The company has its own workshop with a focus on after sales services and mounting of Gorica-manufactured bodies.
“We’re exploring new opportunities such as crane-mounted trucks and trailers. Gorica Industries could build the trailer and Gotrade could mount the crane. We’d also like to add LPG tankers to our range of products in the near future,” says Fornazaric.