Ex-Speedy boss to head new national plant hirer

Aaron Morby 9 years ago
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Former Speedy chief executive Steve Corcoran is returning to the industry after leading a double buy-out of Ipswich-based Fork Rent and London-based One Call.

Investment funds managed by Searchlight and Duke Street snapped up a controlling stake in the businesses and under Corcoran as the new head will merge the two hire firms.

The new plant hirer will rank as a leading operator of excavators and telescopic handlers with over 200 staff and turnover approaching £70m.

While Fork Rent has a greater involvement in the residential market, One Call has a larger footprint in the infrastructure and commercial sectors.

Corcoran decided to stand down as chief executive of Speedy after nine years in the role in November 2013 after problems suddenly emerged at its Middle East division.

He brings more than 30 years’ experience in the sector, including 13 years on the board at Speedy Hire.

It is understood the investors are seeking to further expand the hire businesses to create a truly national hire business.

Oliver Haarmann, a Founding Partner of Searchlight, said: “We have been deeply impressed by the leading market positions achieved by Fork Rent and One Call under the leadership of their founders.

“Together, the companies can leverage their increased scale and strong reputation for providing best-in-class customer service to create a leading equipment rental company in the UK across multiple end-markets and equipment types.”

Stuart McMinnies, Partner of Duke Street, said: “We are delighted to be combining two of the highest quality service providers in the fragmented UK hire market.

“The anticipated strong growth in both the housing and infrastructure sectors will allow this business to expand in both product and geographic terms and we look forward to working closely with the Companies to grow and maximize that opportunity.”

It is understood that Fork Rent’s sister companies, Trucks R Us and Tippers R Us, remain in family hands.

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