Finnish rental company Cramo began its four-year Shape & Share strategy with a positive first quarter to 2017, recording a year-on-year revenues increase of 4.8% to €162.9 million.

The company’s earnings before interest, taxes and amortization (EBITA) was €19.7 million – an increase of 52% year-on-year – while its EBITA margin was 12.1%, compared to 8.3% for the same period a year ago.

Cramo said the launch of its Shape & Share strategy proved significant in its first-quarter earnings, while the election of Veli-Matti Reinikkala as chairman of the board also played a key role.

Part of its new strategy, which was announced in February this year, saw the company split its equipment rental and modular space sectors into two separate segments.

Leif Gustafsson, Cramo’s CEO, said, “The start of the year 2017 has been promising. Demand for equipment rental and modular space developed favourably, and we succeeded in increasing sales in all our equipment rental business segments.

“Sales performance was also supported by the timing of Easter compared to last year. In modular space the rental sales also clearly increased from last year.”

Mr Gustafsson added that its profitability improvement continued to be strong in the equipment rental business division, but said the development in its modular space sector was unsatisfactory during the first quarter. He said the reason for this was overrunning project costs in Finland, which the company has acted on to control future losses.

Mr Gustafsson added, “In February we launched our new strategy – Shape & Share – and set the new long-term financial targets until 2020. The implementation of the new strategy has started in all countries.

“Looking ahead, for this year, I expect the demand for equipment rental and modular space to stay at a good level in all our segments, supported by the good outlook in the construction industry and megatrends such as urbanisation and migration.”

Cramo said it remained positive in its outlook for 2017.

Further managerial changes

The company has also announced it has appointed Philip Isell-Lind af Hageby as its executive vice president for its modular space segment, following Petri Moksén stepping down from the role in April.

Mr Isell-Lind af Hageby will begin his role in the autumn.

Mr Isell-Lind af Hageby previously held the position of managing director and senior vice president of Inwido’s Norwegian operations – a leading window and door supplier. He was also a member of the group management team.

Cramo’s new executive vice president for modular space also worked for SCAN COIN, holding the positions of managing director of its Scandaniavian operations as well as director of retail and group marketing for the company’s main operations.

He holds an MSc from the Stockholm School of Economics.

Mr Gustafsson said, “His [Mr Isell-Lind af Hageby] leadership experience from international companies driving turnaround processes with a clear customer focus will be a great fit to Cramo.

“Modular Space will continue to be an important growth driver for Cramo in the coming years, and we believe Mr Isell-Lind af Hageby has the right personal qualities and experience to help us capture the opportunities ahead.”  

Meanwhile, Mr Isell-Lind af Hageby added, “I truly look forward to joining the Cramo team and head up the Modular Space business division.

“I was really attracted by Cramo’s ambition to develop its business and driving the sharing economy. Modular Space has a strong position with a great value proposition to its customers, and I believe the growth potential is large.”

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