A State of the Industry Update report issued by the American Rental Association says members are more optimistic for construction industry growth this year than previously expected.
In cooperation with Global Insite, an economic forecasting and consulting firm, ARA hosted a webinar in June and found that, based on information gathered from ARA members, overall U.S. construction revenues for 2008 and 2009 should be comparable to or above the levels experienced in 2005-2006.
Ken Hughes, vice president of communications with ARA, says that those firms with realistic expectations will find growth in 2008 to be at realistic levels. “If you’re comparing the 25-percent growth levels we saw in the bumper years of 2006-2007 with this year, you may be disappointed,” he says. “But if you look at the growth percentages of around 12 percent in 2005, which was considered a good year, and compare it to the growth we are seeing this year, you will find that level to be more reasonable. Twelve percent growth in a year is a good year.”
Hughes says one contractor who participated in the webinar said his company has gone from ‘frantic’ growth to ‘manageable’. Hughes says ARA has some members who are in slow markets but it seems to be localized.
Highlights of the report are available at www.ararental.org. ARA will host another webinar in the fall.
Manitowoc has named three new dealers to rent the Potain self-erecting crane line. Bronson Crane, based in Salt Lake City, Utah, now represents the Potain brand throughout the state. In Columbus, Ohio, the Capital City Group is adding Potain cranes to its fleet and is preparing to move to a larger facility. Phoenix-based Compass Equipment, a start-up business run by former Manitowoc employee Kelly Hadland represents Potain in Arizona. Compass focuses on self-erecting cranes in the 85-foot to 147-foot jib range.
United Rentals has revised its outlook for 2008 earnings from $2.75 per share to $2.65 per share. UR’s total outlook dropped to $3.4 billion from a previous prediction of $3.5 billion. The company is offering to purchase up to 27,160,000 shares of its common stock at a price not less than $22.00 nor greater than $25.00 per share.
The ARA Foundation has awarded $34,000 in 20 scholarships to students for the 2008/2009 year. More than 80 students pursuing rental-related educations applied for the 2008/2009 ARA Foundation Scholarships that range from $3,000 to $1,000. Affiliate program scholarships were awarded to 13 other students.
RSC Equipment Rental, Scottsdale, Arizona, has completed the purchase of the operations and certain operating assets of American Equipment Rentals. American Equipment Rentals has locations in Providence, Rhode Island; Woburn, Massachusetts; and New Britain, Connecticut.