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Kingsbridge finance moves into rental

2. January 2018 | Comments (0)

Western States Equipment of Salt Lake City, Utah, has been acquired by finance company Kingsbridge Holdings.

Western States Equipment is a general rental company owned by the Costanzo family, and runs a substantial aerial work platform and telehandler fleet, including Skyjack scissors, Genie and JLG boom lifts and telehandlers. The company was established in 1997 and covers parts of Wyoming, Nevada and Idaho as well as Utah.

Western States Equipment
Western States Equipment moved into a new facility in 2015

Until now Kingsbridge, which is based in Lake Forrest, Illinois, has focused on lease finance for a range of industries, including healthcare and general equipment. This is its first move into the operational side of an industry. It will run the business under the Western States banner and Mark Christison will remain with the company as general manager.

Western States Equipment logo

Kingsbridge chief executive Dan Flagstad said: “We researched the industry and looked at countless opportunities and when the opportunity was presented to us, we knew it was the right fit and the perfect entry point for our firm. Western States Equipment is a great rental company with strong management, has the mix of equipment that we desired, with a heavy emphasis on aerial equipment, has excellent facilities and is in a good market for us to enter into the traditional equipment rental space.”

Western States chief executive David Costanzo added: “We are thrilled to have sold our business to the folks at Kingsbridge. We had multiple qualified potential buyers and it was an easy decision once we met the principals of Kingsbridge, including John Morand and Dan Flagstad. Our employees and customers alike are in very good hands and it will be exciting to see them take the company to the next level. I’d also like to thank Fred Hageman for his handling of the entire process and making this deal possible.”

Vertikal Comment

An interesting move in that it is unusual for an equipment finance and leasing company to move into the rental business, in that it could well find itself competing with its customers.

One has to think that with the ongoing consolidation in the rental market, whether we might see more of this sort of thing? It may well be that Kingsbridge sees an opportunity to learn more about the equipment rental industry, and then cash out by selling to one of the majors in a year or two?

Or maybe it simply sees an opportunity to diversify its portfolio? Definitely one worth watching.
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