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No Slowing Down For Hirepool

March 2 2005

Phase One Achieved In Record Time,
But No Slowing Down For Hirepool In Its 50TH Year

Eighteen months of unprecedented growth is a hard act to follow, but equipment rental leader Hirepool Limited has started 2005 at a cracking pace to ensure its 50th anniversary year builds on the momentum already established.

When former Projex CEO Tenby Powell acquired a stake in Hirepool back in July 2003, the business had 14 branches, 10 of these from Hamilton north and only one in the South Island.

At that time he put a stake in the ground with his vision to “make Hirepool New Zealand’s recognised market leader in equipment rental and related services. ”Phase one was to achieve national coverage by December 2005.

That objective will be completed by the end of next month (April), when in addition to the original 14 locations (nine in Auckland, three in Christchurch and one each in Hamilton and Christchurch), Hirepool will have added a further 22 branches, making the business a serious National player with 36 branches throughout New Zealand.

Last year Hirepool embarked on a serious acquisition hunt adding Takanini, Hamilton West, Mount Maunganui, and Hastings to its North Island network as well as purchasing the portable sanitation business of Portaloo Auckland and Wellington. It also established a major footprint into the South Island, with five new sites in Dunedin, Mosgiel, Christchurch, Timaru and Blenheim.
It began 2005 as it finished 2004, opening a new branch in Rotorua and purchasing Portaloo Marlborough in late January.

Further sites are underway and will be established in Tauranga and Napier by April.
To ensure national penetration, Hirepool has also recently established partnership agreements with existing hire companies in Invercargill, Queenstown, Gore, Te Anau, Cromwell, Gisborne, Wanganui, Whitianga, Coromandel and Wairoa. These branches are in addition to the 36 owned and operated Hirepool branches.

“Much of this growth has occurred through the strong relationships we established with a loyal group of core customers, and this has been reflected in the confidence they have shown in our ability to deliver on service promises,” says Powell.

“We have focussed on developing close personal relationships with construction and contracting companies throughout the country, a good proportion of which are now trading with Hirepool despite our recent arrival in some regions, and by ensuring our branches create a customer-friendly environment for the growing DIY market.”

Further achievements in 2004 included a comprehensive re-branding programme that saw a complete renovation of not only the company’s livery, website, and branch appearance, but also its philosophy - installing a new positioning statement, ‘Hire the Experience’ - that has become the drive behind all strategic decision policies.

“The brand enhancement was a crucial part of our vision for going forward,” says Powell.

“It is more than fresh clean lines, new colours and a key phrase. It set us apart from our competitors and captures our professional, experienced and customer focussed attitude to trade and DIY customers.” Auckland is the last area to be re-branded with all 10 branches, including our Port-a-loo business, set to have the new livery in place by March.

Over the last 12 months Hirepool also engaged in a series of leadership training programmes involving all managerial staff in professional development courses to further build on their skill base and reputation as the industry authority.

Powell says it is a credit to all management and staff that Hirepool has achieved its targets ahead of schedule. “We have done all we set out to do and much more,” he says.

Now the company is focussing on phase two of its strategic plan - consolidation and regional development. This will involve strengthening alliances with a number of key retail and equipment suppliers to support its growing commercial and DIY markets.

As a part of this process, Hirepool has marked its 50th year in business with a major initiative to support its key commercial customer base by signing up as the principal sponsor of the New Zealand Contractor’s Federation for a substantial six figure sum.

It is the largest sponsorship in the 60-year history of the Contractor’s Federation, which represents the civil engineering, construction and general contracting industries. These industries play a vital role in both developing and maintaining the nation’s economy through the provision of the infrastructure of public services across the country - services critical to a modern developed economy that must compete efficiently in world markets to sustain and improve a high standard of living.


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