It took six years. Six long years since the "electric flash." That's what we call the moment in 2013 when the idea of an electric skid steer loader was born in the minds of our developers Slavo Petrenec and Jan Hanes. An idea that was ahead of its time, because at that time no one could imagine such a machine without a diesel engine.
What was it to be? Fully electric, and therefore environmentally friendly and quiet. Reliable. With minimal running costs. After four years of preparation and development, the Elise 900 stood before us. The endless series of tests and trials that followed confirmed that it was just as Jan and Slavo had dreamed it would be.
"Since childhood, we have had a small farm in our family and we take care of the meadows and pastures, the cattle. We often worked only with our hands and manpower, and I started thinking about machines that would make our work easier and at the same time save the environment," says Slavo Petrenec about the beginning of the course of things.
That a great deal of creativity was needed during the years of development is clear. However, our developers had the advantage of having dealt with technological challenges since childhood: "As a kid, I used to add small electric motors and lights to little cars in kindergarten, which did not meet with the understanding of my teachers. Fortunately, my father continued to supply me with various servo motors. Thanks to him, I have been inventing new creative solutions to seemingly simple problems since I was a little boy," says Ján Hanes about the beginnings of his technological creativity.
So the perfect electric loader, the first of its kind, was born and has even been in small-scale production and sale since 2019. But a great machine is one thing, but increasing production capacity, expanding the network and increasing sales is another. Therefore, the team around the Elise 900 naturally started looking around for a reliable investor to help them get this unique machine out into the world. Alongside this, Jan and Slavo started the development of the smaller brother of the Elise 900. It was to become the MiniZ compact loader.
It didn't take long to find an investor. In 2020, Martin Havrda and Václav Audes entered the project with their Arbol Capital, which financed the entire project under the FIRSTGREEN Industries brand.
If time was relatively slow until then, it has accelerated exponentially in recent years. Under the leadership of Arbol Capital, the dealer network immediately grew, expansion into Europe and overseas took place, and sales skyrocketed. The Elise 900 and now the MiniZ began to be known around the world...