UK rental veterans launch business selling service

By Murray Pollok09 April 2020

Four veterans of the UK rental and private investment markets have established a rental match-making service to help rental company owners sell their businesses.

The Hire Exchange – created by David Graham (former Youngman and Speedy Hire), Josh Llewellyn (Chairman and founder of MHM Plant), Chris Harvey (a rental marketing specialist) and Mark Woods (a private investor) – will primarily act for company sellers, helping them find the right buyer at the right price.

THE_Team Image_Press Release

The Hire Exchange team, from left: Mark Woods (Chairman), Josh Llewellyn, Chris Harvey and David Graham. 

The group, who bring decades of experience at rental companies and manufacturers of rental equipment, said they will provide a low-cost, low-risk and anonymous mechanism for sellers to showcase their business on a new online platform.

The business started trading in January this year and has not been formed in response to the COVID-19 crisis.

According to David Graham – a past Managing Director at Speedy - most generalist business sale brokers are expensive and not rental industry experts, so don’t understand the particulars of the market. He said this meant that opportunities for strategic fit, identification of the best buyers, and a true assessment of value, were often missed.

He added that successful independent rental business owners, while good at running their companies, are not experienced in preparing them for sale, nor in providing the information that serious buyers need.

Chris Harvey told IRN that the creation of an ‘information memorandum’ on businesses would be one of its key services; “We know what information buyers actually need. That saves everybody a lot of time. It also asks business owners to ask questions of themselves that they have never heard.”

Harvey told IRN that the initial focus would be on UK opportunities, but added that he was aware of the ongoing interest in UK acquisitions by major continental European companies. He said The Hire Exchange was currently working on four UK-based deals.

Commenting on the launch of the service, Josh Llewellyn said he had been involved directly and indirectly in many deals during his 30 years in the business; “I felt that it was not right that a person who had spent 20 to 30 years working away to grow a business should struggle to get a fair price and reap the rewards for their labour.”

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