Increase in key accounts propels HSS growth

By Murray Pollok17 February 2011

A 25% rise in key accounts business helped HSS Hire grow its 2010 revenues by 15% to £171.0 million. The final quarter of the year was its best with EBITDA profits up by almost 50% on revenues that were 19% higher year on year at £37.4 million.

The company reported double digit growth in each quarter and EBITDA profits for the year were up 33% to £39.1 million.

Chris Davies, HSS Hire's chief executive officer, said the focus on key accounts business - which now represents 30% of revenues - had been significant, as was the company's focus on "target sectors of facilities management, airports, retail and utilities. Our strategy throughout has been to focus on the highly demanding maintain and operate segment rather than ground up construction."

Mr Davies said this part of the market offered "better growth opportunities in these difficult times. We differentiate ourselves through a service proposition which provides cost savings, transparency and risk management for our customers."

During the year the company expanded its low-height powered access fleet - which it claimed is now the second largest in the UK - and more than doubled sales at its training division, partly through the acquisition of Hydrex Training in the second half of the year.

The company's LiveHire online rental offering continued to expand, with 8500 customers now live on the system, said HSS.

Archie Norman, chairman of HSS, and well known in the UK as a past chief executive of ASDA supermarket and a former Conservative MP, said; "The HSS team under Chris Davies' strong leadership has delivered another year of change and growth despite very challenging market conditions.

"This demonstrates that our model of focus on customer service built around a unique network of large branches and fully integrated logistics is capable of delivering real competitive advantage and better results for customers."

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