04.10.2022

Riwal may quit UK

Dutch international access and telehandler rental company Riwal is seriously considering pulling out of the UK market, 13 years after it set up its first UK subsidiary.

The company says that it is “actively considering a plan to cease operations in the UK at the end of the year". It said: “The plan is based on the long term outlook for the UK rental market and the small market position of Riwal UK, which currently employs 51 staff in the UK.”

Group chief executive Pedro Torres added: “We do not see a viable long term business for our operations, given the fierce market conditions and our limited market share. We have always experienced strong support from our highly qualified staff, however the UK market does not show the same performance and growth that we see in many of our other operations. We will of course be consulting with the employees and their representatives on the plan before any decision is finalised.”

Riwal began operations in the UK in 2009 with Les Warren, Tim White and Dave Freebody running a re-rent business, to build in an existing business providing specialist equipment to the UK market from the Netherlands. See: Riwal confirms UK details In the last Top 30 UK rental company survey the company was the 19th largest aerial lift rental company in the UK with 1,058 units in its fleet.

Vertikal Comment

This is a little surprising given the size of the UK aerial lift market, however, while rates have improved, they can still be patchy and competition is tough. Brexit may also have been an issue adding obstacles and bureaucracy to the movement of rental equipment back and forth between continental Europe and the UK. It might also be exacerbated by the UK plans to introduce a British safety mark in place of, or in addition to the CE mark, with the additional talk of a divergence to standards and regulations.

The company has not said whether it would prefer selling the UK operation as a going concern or closing, dispersing the UK fleet among its other companies that might need more machines.

Comments

Malcolm Bowers
The company says that it is “actively considering a plan to cease operations in the UK at the end of the year"
My reading of that comment is that the decision is made but the thing they are considering is how they do it.

Oct 8, 2022

Different points of view..
Interesting that they felt it worthwhile to have an article published highlighting that they "may" quit the UK?

Oct 7, 2022

jim-longstaff
From looking on LinkedIn, it seems this is a done deal and staff are already looking for new positions.
There is a shortage of quality in the marketplace and they should all find employment very quickly.

Oct 7, 2022

mega
Riwals staff training programme is second to none my man. Just because the Company European strategy has changed doesn't mean the people are useless. In my opinion at least.

Oct 7, 2022

Shortbutsweet
What do you mean some very good people available!! Surely if they were any good Riwal would not be pulling out of the UK!!

Oct 7, 2022

mega
Cold business decision, but understandable. Some very good people will now be available, and an opportunity to capitalise on better rates as a reduction in fleet availability should help. We can only hope!!!!

Oct 7, 2022

Frazer Drive
Rates improved?

Oct 5, 2022
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