Four lifting experts join MyCrane team

The world’s first digital platform for the search and selection of cranes, MyCrane, has strengthened its team with the appointment of four executives. Each of them brings many years of experience in the lifting industry.

These new appointments include: Erik Altena as head of strategic development (effective 1 February 2022); Alexander Kouklev as business development director for Russian Far East and Asia Pacific (APAC); Alan Faulds as managing director for the UAE and Oman; and Igor Dobrovolskiy as managing director for Russia.

“Alongside growing our global network by appointing franchise holders to operate our service, MyCrane is investing in our core team to grow our portfolio and introduce new products and services. Our new appointments will help us to do exactly that,” explained MyCrane founder Andrei Geikalo, himself a former commercial director at global engineering specialist Mammoet.

“I am delighted to welcome such highly experienced professionals to the MyCrane family, all of whom share my passion for digitalising the crane rental business.”

Erik Altena and Alexander Kouklev

In his new role, Mr Altena will focus on the strategic development of MyCrane’s global partnerships, including franchises. He will work on new products and services, and coordinate MyCrane’s cooperation with other start-ups innovating in the crane industry.

Mr Altena entered the lifting industry after earning a master’s degree in civil engineering at the Delft University of Technology. Thereafter, he joined Mammoet at the company’s global HQ in Utrecht, Netherlands, as a project engineer.

In recent years, Mr Altena was in Mammoet’s global market development & innovations department, working on technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to help the end-customer optimise crane utilisation. He developed a new product, CraneFact – a device that uses smart sensors to track crane movements and the utilisation of heavy equipment on site.

As business development director for the Far East of Russia and APAC, Mr Kouklev will handle business development and sales in these regions, and will also support the platform’s marketing activities.

Mr Kouklev spent 16 years working at Mammoet, where he served as general director at Mammoet Sakhalin, responsible for the development of all business activity in Sakhalin region and other locations in the Russian Far East. He has held other roles at Schlumberger and Exxon Neftegas Limited.

Mr Kouklev’s skills include project management, heavy lifting and transportation engineering and operations, equipment planning/repair/maintenance, logistics and procurement.

Alan Faulds and Igor Dobrovolskiy

Mr Faulds he will lead the development of MyCrane’s business in the UAE and Oman. Formerly employed by Sarens, he was manager of site operations at the Tengizchevroil (TCO) project in Kazakhstan.

Mr Faulds began his career with Mammoet, working in Southern Africa for several years at all levels of lifting operations before moving to Dubai as Mammoet’s head of operations for Middle East and Africa. His work has also taken him to Australia and Europe.
“I joined MyCrane after realising this is exactly what the sector is crying out for. Modernisation and digitalisation are long overdue and have been met with great enthusiasm from both clients and suppliers,” said Mr Faulds.

Mr Dobrovolskiy will lead the development of MyCrane’s business in Russia. He said, “Knowing all the challenges of the crane procurement process from the client perspective, I decided to join a start-up business because I can see huge potential to change the industry.”

An engineer specialising in the development and operation of oil and gas fields, Mr Dobrovolskiy’s extensive industry experience has seen him work in numerous regions in Russia, holding senior positions at top Russian oil and gas companies such as Lukoil, Transneft and Slavneft.

Revolutionising crane rental business

The new MyCrane platform ( simplifies the process of crane rental procurement, allowing users to submit details of their lifting requirements in order to receive personalised quotes from a range of registered crane providers.

For the first time, customers of the platform can simply and quickly request a crawler, mobile or tower crane without having to rely on manual processes, such as calling suppliers or making multiple offline requests.

The service, operated in countries around the world by a network of local franchisees (with support from MyCrane’s head office team in Dubai), offers cranes with a capacity of between 6 and 750 tonnes. 

Drawing on the management team’s experience in the industry, the platform has been carefully designed to ensure ease of use, and that the quotes generated are directly comparable. Registration is free for both users and equipment rental companies.
Besides the lifting services search, MyCrane features a number of other tools for the crane industry, including a Marketplace to advertise used equipment, rigging equipment, spare parts and auxiliaries, plus industry vacancies. 
Consultancy services, such as engineering for heavy lift projects, are offered on a truly independent basis, meaning clients are presented with a full range of solutions and service providers from the whole of the market, and the most cost-effective solution.
MyCrane has also commenced the testing of a new, universally accessible crane selection tool which will be offered to the lifting industry at no cost. MyCrane Selector will allow users to quickly and easily identify what crane should be used, as well as the crane’s capacity and optimum configuration.

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