Hydraulics Online’s mission is simple: Provide personal service, best technical advice and unrivalled choice wherever our customers are in the world. On this occasion, our customer journey took us Guam – ‘where the American day begins’.
But before we jet over to the West Pacific, let’s set the scene…
Gateway to the World
Hydraulics Online supports customers in 130 countries and is, in the UK, viewed as the hydraulics solutions “gateway” to the rest of the world. Moreover, nearly half of our new customers are located overseas. And, as a result of our achievements, the UK’s Department for International Trade appointed us as a Northern Powerhouse Export Champion in February 2019.
Supporting customers overseas is now simply part of daily life for the team, but it never gets to be ‘routine’. Having customers in over 70% of the world’s countries means excitement always heightens when we receive an enquiry from a country that we haven’t traded with before. On this occasion, a marine shipping company approached us from the West Pacific US Sovereign State of Guam.
Next Stop… Guam!
Our technical sales engineer, Steve, received an enquiry from Cabras Marine Corporation, located in Guam over 7400 miles away from our HQ in Cheshire, UK. This prompted a Google search and intense map viewing in the office: “Where is Guam?”, “How does a company that far away find Hydraulics Online? and “Is the name pronounced [ˈɡwɑːm] or [ˈɡʷɑhɑn]?”.
In a nutshell, Guam is a small U.S. island territory in the Western Pacific. It’s known for its stunning beaches, native Chamorro culture, Spanish colonial heritage and for playing a significant role in World War II. What’s more, it’s a duty-free haven and fondly described as “Where the American Day Begins”.
Introducing Cabras Marine Corporation
Cabras Marine Corporation (CMC) is a female-owned business located in Piti, Guam. The company is a leading provider of pilot, tug, barge and ferry services and also performs quality ship repair services at its ABR Board certified shipyard. Moreover, Cabras Marine recently won a multi-year contract to perform maintenance and repair to vessels at the local U.S. Navy base.
Our paths crossed, when the buyer at Cabras Marine initiated a Google search for a new Danfoss pump for a U.S. Navy 36ft dive boat. He was looking for a reliable company with an acceptable lead-time. Hydraulics Online ticked all the boxes and it was furthermore reassuring for the Buyer to read the case study featuring our partnership with another US Navy base in Okinawa, Japan.
The buyer at Cabras Marine Corporation sums up his experience with dealing with Hydraulics Online:
I got a quick reply on my RFQ and the availability was immediate. The sales engineer was friendly, easy to deal with and helpful.
Where the American Day Begins
Guam is the United States’ westernmost point. This means that it’s the first place where the sun rises on U.S. soil, approximately 14 hours ahead of the U.S. east coast (!) – hence the slogan “Where the American Day Begins”.
Facts About Guam
|Area:||210 Square miles (540 square km)|
|Largest Ethnic Groups:||Chamorro (37%), Filipino (26%), White Americans (7%)|
|Official Languages:||English and Chamorro|
|Sovereign State:||United States|
|Legislature:||Legislature of Guam|
|Major industries:||US defence, tourism and construction|
Want to Learn More About Guam? Click on the tabs below.
A Remarkable History
The Guam people are called Guamanians and from birth they are American citizens. Approximately 4,000 years ago, the indigenous Guamanians (or Chamorros), settled on the island. They are in fact the oldest civilisation in the North Pacific and inhabit the islands of Micronesia including Guam and Saipa.
Portuguese explorer, Ferdinand Magellan, was the first European to visit the island, on March 6, 1521. Spain colonized Guam in 1668 and later, during the Spanish–American War, the United States captured the territory in 1898.
Furthermore, Guam had a unique position in World War II, when Japan invaded the island shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941. For the next three years, Guam was the only US territory occupied by Japanese forces until the Americans returned in 1944 to reclaim the island.
On August 1, 1950, the Organic Act of Guam gave U.S. citizenship to all Guamanians (people born in Guam).
Did you know? The Gaum territorial flag is dark blue with a narrow red border. The latter represents the bloodshed in World War II and Spanish sovereignty. In the centre of the flag is the coat of arms; depicted in the same shape as the slingshot stones the ancient Chamorro warriors used as weapons.
Why the Name Guam?
The legend says that when sailors from Spain came to Guam, the native Chamorro people would run out to their ships to sell fruit, calling “Guahan!”
“Guahan” means “I have,” and it sounded like “Guam” to the Spanish sailors, who named the island after this greeting.
The English spelling is Guam [ˈɡwɑːm] and in Chamorro it’s Guåhån [ˈɡʷɑhɑn].