Michael Kneeland: Access market 'bullish'

26 March 2013

Michael Kneeland CEO of United Rentals.

Michael Kneeland CEO of United Rentals.

Speaking at the IPAF Summit March 26 in Miami, Michael Kneeland, chief executive officer of United Rentals, said the second half of 2013 will be stronger than the first half with the market seeing 8 percent growth in 2013 and 11 percent in 2014. He also said United Rentals plans to spend more than $1 billion on capital expenditure in 2014 with 30-40 percent of that figure going toward aerial equipment.

United Rentals recently reported final quarter 2012 revenues up 13.2 percent to $1.25 billion, while full year sales increased 12.8 percent to $4.66 billion and EBITDA profits rose to $1.99 billion from $1.49 billion.

"[About] 43 percent of our fleet is access," Kneeland told the IPAF Summit crowd. "Our utilization was 73.9 percent for the last quarter of 2012. We are bullish about access for the future."

Kneeland said 39 percent of the company's rental revenue in 2012 came from access equipment. He also said residential construction is "coming up." "Residential construction [starts] indicate non-residential construction is coming up too."

Typically, nine to 12 months after residential construction kicks up, non-res follows, Kneeland said. "Half of United Rentals' revenue comes from non-residential and industrial," he said. "The back half of this year will be stronger than the front half."

Kneeland also said United Rentals has saved $104 million during its first eight months after integrating with RSC. He wants the company to round out the year with more than $250 million in savings.

"Recovery is on its way," he said.

More than 350 industry professionals from across the world are attending the IPAF Summit and IAPAs at the Miami Downtown Hotel.

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