French rental company Kiloutou has agreed to buy Germany-based aerial work platform rental specialist Starlift.

Kiloutou said the transaction allowed it to continue its international expansion by entering the German market.

Starlift is a key regional player in access equipment rental in northern Germany with a network of three branches located in Hamburg, Berlin and Rostock, and over 50 staff.

The company has a fleet of 750 machines including aerial work platforms and telehandlers, with maximum reach of up to 47m, targeting a broad customer base across construction and many other sectors.

Kiloutou said the deal allowed it to enter a major European market, renowned for its size and dynamism. It said it would build on the experience and expertise of the Starlift team, and said the company would retain broad autonomy.

Starlift’s current leaders Hans-Dieter Kark and his son Oliver Kark would retain important roles in the combined company - the first as a director of the holding company Kiloutou in Germany, and the second as an operational officer of the company.

Kiloutou CEO Xavier du Boÿs said the acquisition allowed the company to continue its international expansion into the third largest European market, which showed great potential.

“Its specialist positioning and excellent reputation make Starlift particularly well-suited to tackle this highly fragmented market base where the general rental model is not the norm. Kiloutou’s objective is to continue its development in Germany by expanding its presence in other trades and other German states.”

Hans-Dieter Kark, chairman, founder and majority shareholder of Starlift, added, "I welcome the acquisition of Starlift by Kiloutou. It will allow the company to continue its development by joining forces with a European leader while continuing to benefit from its customer service excellence on which its reputation is established.

“I personally believe in the Kiloutou development project in this market, and I decided to actively support by becoming a director of the holding company group in Germany.”

The finalisation of the transaction is scheduled for mid-April 2016.

See the upcoming April/May issue of IRN for a profile interview with Mr du Boÿs.

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