US rental store owners positive about 2011

By Maria Hadlow01 February 2011

According to the latest quarterly ARA (American Rental Association) Economic Survey of members, a large majority of rental store owners and managers - more than 80% - expect 2011 to be a much better year than 2010.

More than 34% of ARA general members responding to the survey expect rental revenues to show double-digit increases in 2011 compared to 2010 and another 46% expect at least single-digit increases this year.

The ARA says that the results show a growing optimism for a significant rebound in 2011 as only about half of the respondents said revenues increased in 2010 compared to 2009. Nearly 30% of the respondents had revenue declines in 2010, but only 4% expect a drop in revenue in 2011.

Nearly 70% of the respondents also expect to spend more on new rental equipment purchases in 2011 compared to 2010, a significant increase over last year.

The spending expectations of general members mirror the sales forecasts of ARA associate member equipment suppliers as more than 83%of the associate member survey respondents expect increased sales into the rental channel, including 52% that expect double-digit sales increases.

Less than 20% of the associate member respondents said sales into the rental channel decreased in 2010 while only 1% of the respondents expect a decrease in 2011.

Christine Wehrman, ARA's executive vice president and chief executive officer said, "Clearly ARA members are more optimistic about 2011 and have a positive mindset. This underscores the importance of The Rental Show in Las Vegas. The timing is right for solidifying the buyer and seller connections, learning how to further promote the rental concept and taking advantage of tax benefits."

The Rental Show is scheduled for February 27-March 2, 2011, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. Access International will be bringing you all the access related news from the show in its March/April issue.

ARA says that the survey results reflect a snapshot in time of those who responded and may not be representative of the industry as a whole.

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