Equipment Depot founder Don Moes last week named Kelly Kunka president and CEO of the Waco, Texas-based regional forklift, aerial, tractor and materials-handling sales and rental company. Kunka joined Equipment Depot in 1995 and helped establish the company’s San Antonio branch. Kunka has worked in rental sales, service sales, equipment sales and branch management, and has served as chief operating officer since 1999.
Moes will continue as chairman of Equipment Depot. Moes will also be involved in the development of four other material handling companies also owned by Equipment Depot’s parent company, Pon North America.
PNA is a division of Pon Holdings, a Dutch trading company and the largest privately held company in the Netherlands. PNA operates five forklift dealerships in the eastern and southwest United States with annual revenues of more than $450 million. The other companies are Equipment Depot in Illinois; Portman Equipment in Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia; Forklifts Inc. in eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware; and Levee Lift in Indiana and Kentucky.
Moes also will devote time to local projects. “After more than 40 years in the equipment industry I felt I was ready to devote more time to civic projects in Waco,” Moes said. “This community has been very good to my company and my family and I want to contribute what I can in return. In addition, I believe that when the next generation of leadership is trained and ready to take control you need to step aside and let them take the reins.”
Moes founded Equipment Depot as Central Texas Clarklift in 1975, with two stores and seven employees. It changed its name to Equipment Depot in 1995. The company now has 12 stores, is close to $200 million in total annual revenue, and has more than 600 employees.
“Equipment Depot is now one of the largest material handling companies in Texas,” Kunka said. “We have positioned the company to meet the challenges of competition and consolidation in our industry, and we are prepared to continue to grow in each of our business segments.”
Equipment Depot is a major Texas rental player as well, No. 39 on the RER 100 based on more than $40 million in rental revenue in 2006. Today, the company represents more than 30 industry-leading manufacturers and operates throughout Texas, southern Oklahoma and southwestern Louisiana.
It operates 12 forklift and material-handling equipment superstores that sell, service and rent forklifts and other equipment from the Red River to the Rio Grande in Texas.
In addition, it operates a separate tire and battery center in Dallas. It also operates forklift service depots strategically located along the Interstate 35 corridor, the Rio Grande valley and the Gulf Coast in Abilene, Brownwood, Bryan-College Station, Corsicana, Del Rio, Denton, Killeen, Paris, San Angelo, Temple and Victoria Texas as well as Lake Charles, La.
The company is an authorized dealer for Barrett, Caterpillar, Clark, CombiLift, Doosan, Drexel, Linde, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Noble and Princeton forklifts in various markets throughout its sales and service territory, which includes 158 counties in Texas, 8 counties in southern Oklahoma and 2 parishes in western Louisiana. It sells, services, rents and provides parts for all types of forklifts and lift trucks, including cushion and pneumatic-tired models. Its product range includes sit-down electrics, narrow aisle order pickers and reach trucks, electric pallet jacks, walkies, warehouse and yard forklifts with gas, LP and diesel engines. It also represents Tiger utility vehicles, Green Machine on-road and off-road sweepers and Factory Cat sweepers and scrubbers.
Equipment Depot is also an authorized dealer for SkyTrak, Genie, JLG, Snorkel and Terex telehandlers, scissorlifts, aerial lifts and booms. It is also an authorized dealer for a full-line of light construction equipment and attachments built by New Holland, including backhoes, skid steers, mini-excavators, road graders and wheel loaders, as well as Boxer walk-behind trenchers.
In addition to his work at Equipment Depot, Kunka has worked as an avionics engineer for General Dynamics, and as a loss control consultant with Factory Mutual Engineering.