Essex Crane Rental’s equipment rental grew 26.7 percent in 2008 to $61.9 million, compared with $48.9 million in 2007, while total revenue jumped a less spectacular 9.7 percent to $85.3 million, compared with $77.8 million in 2007.
Essex Crane’s fleet size currently stands at more than 350 lattice-boom crawler cranes and various types of attachments.
The company said many of the market sectors served by Essex Crane were not as adversely affected by the weakening economy as the residential and light commercial sectors, which are not significant markets for Essex, whose management believes that Essex’ strong niche market position and improvements in its fleet because of investment in new cranes will provide similar future growth trends. Essex’ primary markets are infrastructure projects such as highways, bridges, airports, power plants and water management projects; institutional projects such as schools, stadiums, hospitals and government buildings; and commercial projects such as retail stores, offices and recreational, distribution and manufacturing facilities.
Average crane rental rates jumped 31.4 percent to $21,382 per crane per rental month, compared with $16,266 in 2007. Much of the increase was as a result of Essex Crane’s changes in fleet towards larger, higher rental rate cranes with greater capacity.
Essex Crane Rental said it expects to benefit from the United States’ stimulus package in the second half of 2009.
“During the fourth quarter, the challenging commercial credit environment, economic uncertainty and lower oil prices impacted our customers and new order activity, including downstream power and petrochemical owners, who chose to defer certain maintenance projects,” said Essex Crane president and CEO Ron Schad. “During the latter portion of the first quarter of 2009, we began to see a pickup in quoting activity that is consistent with levels in the same period last year. In addition, our quoting activity leads us to believe we will realize a benefit beginning in the second half of 2009 from infrastructure projects included in the Federal Stimulus Bill that target highway and heavy bridge construction, civil works programs, and water and wastewater treatment. Alternative energy projects, especially wind energy, are also expected to general higher levels of quoting activity.”
Based in Buffalo Grove, Ill., Essex Crane Rental is No. 32 on the RER 100.