Herc acquires access equipment specialist

Herc Rentals has acquired Wisconsin-based Aerial Work Platforms, Inc. (AWP) Terms of the deal were not disclosed. 

herc rentals, herc, herc fleet (Photo: Herc Rentals)
Aerial Work Platforms, herc (Photo: Aerial Work Platforms, Inc.)

The transaction will see Herc tack on four locations across Wisconsin and add all 1,800 of AWP’s aerial assets to its fleet. 

The news comes one day after Herc announced its 2023 Q4 and full-year results and acknowledged its “strategic priorities” for fleet investment and acquisitions. During the company’s investors call on Feb. 13, Herc executives noted the increasing need for access equipment. 

“[Within] the access, aerial and material handling [fleet] areas, we really can’t get enough...,” said Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Aaron Birnbaum. “We would take more if we could. But those are some of the areas with where we are can’t get as much as we want.”

Founded in 1979, AWP specializes in the rental, service and sale of aerial lift equipment including scissor lifts, boom lifts, telehandlers and forklifts. Borgman Capital acquired AWP in December 2020 from the company’s founder, Pat Barney. AWP has locations in Sussex, Janesville, Neenah and Kenosha, Wisconsin and is the number one independent rental equipment company in the state based on fleet size.

During the three-year investment period, AWP’s growth was driven by strategic equipment purchases, fleet diversification, operational improvements, geographic expansion to Kenosha and increasing market share. Following Barney’s planned retirement, Borgman Capital hired rental equipment industry-veteran Robert Rivera as president.

“We executed many new growth initiatives during the investment period. At the end of the day, AWP’s success comes down to Robert’s leadership and the strong customer service culture he built,” said Sequoya Borgman, founder and CEO of Borgman Capital. “AWP is an example of what’s possible when the right leader is put in place to build on a founders’ legacy after an ownership transition. It was a pleasure to partner with Robert and the team over the last three years and we will be cheering everyone on in their next phase of growth.”

Rivera added, “The outstanding success we achieved is a direct result of the incredible talent at AWP. The team’s dedication to customer service will remain our focus as part of Herc Rentals. I am appreciative of Borgman Capital’s support and the latitude I was given to lead, set ambitious goals and make the pivotal decisions needed to grow the business.”


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