Finning International last week reported revenue reaching record levels for a first quarter, with CD $1.24 billion, an increase of 7.9 percent from last year’s first quarter. First quarter net income was $56.9 million or 64 cents per share, a 52.4-percent earnings per share increase compared with the first quarter of 2005.

“Excellent results from our Canadian operations, reflecting strong demand for product and customer support services, were primarily responsible for the improved earnings,” said Finning president and CEO Doug Whitehead. “However, our UK dealership and Hewden operations performed better as well. The continued improvement in our cash flow is the result of the ongoing focus on effective working capital management.” Finning’s EBIT for the quarter was $94.2 million, compared with $69.4 million in the first quarter of 2005.

Michael Waites, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Finning added that the strong results “will directionally offset the expected continuing pressure for the remainder of the year from a strong Canadian dollar and very competitive market conditions for all of our businesses in the U.K.”

Waites was appointed executive vice president and CFO May 1, after a six-year stint as CFO at Canadian Pacific Railway.

Finning made a net investment in rental assets of $80.6 million during the first quarter of 2006, an increase of $11.2 million from the same period in 2005. Rental fleets were being replenished in the first quarter of 2006, particularly in Canada, because rental assets decreased in 2005 to support customer demand and offset product availability issues.

Equipment rental revenue for the entire company was CD $231.4 million in volume, a slight decline from $248 million in the first quarter of 2005. Equipment rental in Canada accounted for CD $54.2 million, up from CD $45.1 in the first quarter of 2005, a 20.1 percent hike.

Based in Vancouver, B.C., Finning is No. 16 on the RER 100.