A large majority of rental store owners and managers—more than 80 percent—expect 2011 to be a much better year than 2010, according to the latest quarterly American Rental Association (ARA) Economic Survey of members.
More than 34 percent of ARA general members responding to the survey expect rental revenues to show double-digit increases in 2011 versus 2010, and another 46 percent expect at least single-digit increases this year. The results show a growing optimism for a significant rebound in 2011, since only about half of the respondents said revenues increased in 2010 compared to 2009. Nearly 30 percent of the respondents endured revenue declines in 2010, but only 4 percent expect a drop in revenue in 2011.
Nearly 70 percent 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 also match up with the sales forecasts of ARA associate member equipment suppliers; more than 83 percent of associate member survey respondents expect increased sales into the rental channel, including 52 percent that expect double-digit sales increases in 2011.
Less than 20 percent of associate member respondents reported that sales into the rental channel decreased in 2010, and only 1 percent of the respondents expect a decrease in 2011. (Note that survey results reflect a snapshot in time of those who responded and may not be representative of the industry as a whole, according to ARA sources.)
“Clearly ARA members are more optimistic about 2011 and have a positive mindset,” says Christine Wehrman, ARA’s executive vice president and CEO. “ … 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.”
ARA is an international trade association for the owners of equipment rental businesses and the manufacturers and suppliers of construction/industrial, general tool, and party/event rental equipment. ARA members, including more than 7,500 rental businesses and nearly 1,000 manufacturers and suppliers, are located in every U.S. state, every Canadian province, and more than 30 countries worldwide.