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June 2009
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Executive Hire News › Archives › June 2009 › Executive Report : Executive news

Executive Report : Executive news

HSC DELIVERS THE GOODS IN SOUTH AFRICA
Following his visit to the Executive Hire Show in February, Rohan Lambson, Chief Executive of Lambson’s Hire in South Africa, ordered a container load of lighting and heating equipment worth nearly £20,000 from The Hire Supply Company (HSC). The hirer’s order comprised tripod site lights, double headed site lights, Powerman 500W tungsten halogen lamps, tungsten halogen heads, complete with cables and plugs, as well as Elite Quartz 3kw heaters and Elite Ceramic 2.8kw heaters. Other equipment supplied included Elite fume extractors and ducting, Elite Tempest industrial coolers, industrial wet and dry vacuum cleaners and laminate cutters.
The equipment has now arrived safely and Rohan sent us this photo from Lambson’s Germiston depot in Greater Johannesburg to prove it. Operating 21 depots throughout South Africa, Rohan comments “we run many of these lines in our fleet already, so these products will be both additions and replacements. I know the quality of the Elite products and we have had a long relationship with HSC, but this is the first time we’ve taken a container from them.”

Balloo boosts Takeuchi line-up
Balloo Hire Centres, which has four depots in Northern Ireland, has expanded its Takeuchi mini fleet with ten more supplied by local dealer, Dieci. The company now has more than 80 of the manufacturer’s machines, from sub 1-tonne to 7.5 tonne.
“By far the most popular mini in hire remains the 3-tonne machine,” says MD Paul Lavery. “Despite the downturn in construction and civil engineering activity, we are actually currently experiencing strong levels of demand for the majority of our excavator range, with the Takeuchi TB125 being particularly popular. We have added eight more, alongside two additional TB145 models to meet demand.”
Balloo has depots in Bangor, Ballyclare, Belfast and Lisburn and employs 55 people. Its fleet comprises more than 6,000 units of plant and equipment, and it has invested £12m in equipment over the past five years.

Traction maintains its grip
To meet the needs of customers, Traction Equipment of Stafford has increased its fleet of Niftylift access platforms, having just taken delivery of another HR15 machine. “We already had several tracked and trailer mounted 12m and 17m machines,” said Director Matt Bloomer. “We purchased our first self-propelled HR15 last year and it has performed so well have had to by this additional one. Generally, equipment is flying out the door. There might be a downturn in house building, but that seems to be outweighed by a greater amount of maintenance work being carried out.
“We took advantage of a great special offer price at the Executive Hire Show and bought a 2000psi bowser/pressure washer from Brendon, which almost immediately went out on long-term hire for graffiti removal work. We also recently bought a 3000psi machine, again from Brendon, and have added our first Yanmar 5 tonne zero tail swing mini excavator. In addition, we have a Niftylift 21m self-propelled platform coming soon for evaluation.”

DIDCOT PLANT EXPANDS VOLVO FLEET
Didcot Plant has added two more Volvo EC55B Pro mini excavators to its fleet, joining others machines from the manufacturer ranging from the 1.5 tonne EC15B to the reduced swing radius ECR88 Plus. MD Fred Tarrant said, “Our association with key personnel at Volvo dates back to the Pel Job days and during this time a close and trusting relationship has been forged. We have always enjoyed an exceptional level of service and support.”
Describing itself as offering everything from a sledgehammer to an 8 tonne excavator, Didcot Plant specialises in the hire of plant and tools to tradesmen and DIY customers, operating from depots situated at Didcot and Winnersh (where it trades as Axworthy & Company Ltd). The original business was established in 1967 and was acquired by father and son team Fred and Matthew Tarrant in 1992. It moved to its current Didcot premises in 2001.

Quick demand for compact Demon
Hire Station and Brandon Hire are among organisations that have already added Demon International’s recently launched Tornado Mini-Bowser washer model to their fleets. The product was developed to meet demand for a smaller portable pressure washer with its own water supply, for tasks such as cleaning, graffiti removal, disinfection and dust suppression.
The Mini-Bowser can be supplied as a tank-only unit for window cleaning applications, or with a centrifugal pump for plant watering. Power comes from either a Honda GX120 or GX200 engine, providing up to 15 minutes washing time away from a water source. The machine comes with a self-cleaning filtration system, an integral hose reel with 15m of hose and chemical pickup.

New MacGen appointment
John Parker has joined Northern Ireland-based power generation equipment specialist MacGen as Regional Director with responsibility for Great Britain. He was previously with GenSet. “MacGen has a solid customer base comprising hirers, civil engineers, contractors and utilities, and we can build on this with our latest products,” he said. “These include the MLT4 vertical mast lighting tower and our Ready to Rent generator range designed specifically to meet the demands of the hire industry.”

PSL acquires M & R Hire Centres
Bolton-based PSL Tool & Plant Hire has increased its depot network to ten, following its recent acquisition of M & R Hire Centres. M & R’s branches in Blackpool, Bury and Lancaster are being re-branded in keeping with PSL’s existing locations in Blackburn, Leyland, Liverpool, Manchester, Rochdale, Preston and the Bolton head office. M & R’s sites in Beverley and Urmston have been closed.
“We have been looking to expand for some time,” PSL’s MD Stephen Dennis told EHN. “M & R’s locations complement ours well, and they have traditionally enjoyed strong cash customer business. We will be adding more equipment for their fleets, such as mini excavators, narrow dumpers and compact push-around scissor lifts.”

4 HIRE'S “EXPLOSIVE GROWTH” IN JERSEY
According to Director Nigel Blandin, 4 Hire has enjoyed “explosive growth” on the island of Jersey since the company was established in July last year by Nigel and fellow Directors Alex McMasters, Mick Jehan as well as Roger Quenault. Having sold his former company Blandin Light Plant to Hewden in 2003, Nigel stayed with Hewden for three years before leaving in 2006 to run his own contracting business. Alex and Mick also operated a groundwork and drainage contracting business. However, between them, they were “hiring equipment all over the island, but couldn’t get a good service, so we decided to set up 4 Hire.
“Our business model is the same as that of a major car hire company. We offer equipment that is new, or nearly new, clean and well presented. Before each hire we valet the machines by cleaning the windows, dashboard, cab seats and upholstery. The levers and control services are also cleaned and new paper mats are supplied. We believe that, if you give a customer a good piece of equipment, then that customer will give you back a good piece of equipment.
On a small island like Jersey, customers expect a machine to be delivered at 8am, so we get in to work at 5am to ensure that deliveries are made on time. We also have a crusade to train our team, customers and, even, competitors to CITB standard. Roger Quenault is responsible for training and business development and he is accredited by CSCS, IPAF and PASMA.”
Nigel Blandin reports that 4 Hire’s initial investment in equipment was £400,000, but this quickly became £1m “as the business exploded immediately.” On establishing 4 Hire, Nigel employed two of his former team from Hewden and another followed later. Last December, Hewden announced that it was closing its depot on the island and this happened at the end of March. “This closure was both a help and a hindrance. Hewden probably had 40% of the Jersey market, followed by SGB Channel Islands and Normans. By December, we had overtaken Hewden and our business continued to grow as customers learnt of the closure of Hewden. The hindrance was that this forced us to invest
another £400,000.”
4 Hire now operates 15 Bobcat excavators from the 750kg micro up to 7 tonne machines, 12 Neuson dumpers, Bomag rollers, a fleet of Haulotte boom and scissor lift platforms, Cormidi tracked dumpers and SRL battery-powered portable traffic light sets, amongst many others. In addition, all its plate compactors, pumps, vibrating pokers and floor saws are all Wacker units.
“Jersey is not recession proof, but our economy is different. The island is like a money box storing money for people. Our housing market has contracted, although house prices are actually rising. For us, the year has been phenomenal – far better than we expected. There is no point in being miserable and depressed; you have to get on and put the work in. Throughout the year, we have never said ‘no’ to a customer. Small independents like us know that it is our customers that pay the wages. National hirers are more concerned with shareholder value. It is all about looking after customers. Smaller hirers will do well in this recession whereas large companies will haemorrhage money, achieving massive turnovers without any profit.”

 

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