Cargotec's Kalmar business area started to take shape in 1997 when Partek Corporation acquired the Finnish state-owned Sisu Ltd. This was an important move strategically, as Sisu had acquired the materials handling business of Finnish Valmet Ltd only three years earlier. The business activities of Sisu focused on container handling, heavy lift trucks and terminal tractors.
In the same year, Partek acquired a major shareholding in Kalmar Industries Ltd, a container handling equipment producer. Sisu Terminal Systems was combined with Kalmar Industries, which had been listed on the Swedish Stock Exchange since 1994.
Kalmar Industries became wholly owned by Partek Corporation in 2000 when it was also delisted.
In 2001, Kalmar business area was further strengthened by the acquisitions of Dutch ship-to-shore, straddle carrier manufacturer, Nelcon B.V., and the maintenance service company Groot-Hensen B.V. Nelcon, founded in 1883.
One of the most important events of 2011 was the closing of the acquisition of US-based terminal operating systems provider Navis. Navis’s technology further strengthens Kalmar’s position as the industry forerunner in terminal automation.
Another significant step in 2012 was the introduction of the technology and competence centre in Tampere, Finland, in December. Centre allows Kalmar to focus strongly on the development of energy-efficient, safe and intelligent machinery and automation solutions.
Cargotec's Rainbow-Cargotec Industries Co Ltd (RCI), a joint venture established in China, became operational in 2012, and further development efforts will be taken in 2013. RCI produces rubber-tyred gantry cranes (RTGs) and quay cranes for Kalmar’s customers.