EVANSTON, Ill. — National Equipment Services made its November 2002 $13.75 million interest payment on its bonds, new president and CEO Joseph Gullion announced last month. Gullion also announced changes that would change NES' business model, creating more of a national identity rather than a loosely affiliated network of separate rental companies.
Guillion's immediate focus was on cost-restructuring of the company.
“Throughout 2002, the focus has been on two areas of operations: cost reductions and efficiency gains,” Gullion said. “We are positioned to experience tangible results from these efforts in 2003 by having removed more than $50 million in operating costs. The major contributors to the savings are the reduction in the workforce by about 650 employees in 2002 — an effort largely completed; consolidating sales, service, delivery and back-office operations; and finding ways to capitalize on our size, such as through greater use of volume purchasing.
“To continue these gains and to implement new ones, we made several organizational changes. This included creating a new position — director of assets — which reports to me.”
Gullion named Brent Mumford to this position. He added that while improving efficiency is important, revenue growth is essential to the company's future.
“In the 60 plus days since I joined NES, we completed an in-depth evaluation of all aspects of our operations and how to help them grow. The result is a formal strategic business plan. All of our 190 locations have targets for revenues, costs and equipment utilization.”
Gullion added that NES recently hired Don Scott as vice president of sales and marketing and Mike Disser as vice president of marketing to lead the company's strategic sales campaign and develop its national account team.
“We will benefit from [Scott's] expertise as NES moves from a decentralized operation — where local branches were responsible for their own identities, and sales and marketing activities; to a more adhesive model where we are creating a national NES brand and coordinating and leveraging marketing and sales efforts.”
The creation of a national NES brand represents a dramatic shift from the company's founding philosophy and business model it has employed ever since, where each acquired company used its original name and submerged the identity of NES as secondary.
“Mike, who was promoted to an executive position in April, has been instrumental in laying the groundwork for this change,” Guillion added. “After I came aboard in September, Mike and I discussed our company's needs and the areas on which he wanted to focus. As a result, he moved from vice president of sales and marketing to focus exclusively on marketing.”
Scott will be responsible for developing sales and marketing strategies for NES, as well as assisting regional vice presidents and their sales management teams with all aspects of recruiting, compensation, training and development. Before joining NES, Scott was senior vice president of sales at AAR Corp., Wood Dale, Ill., an aerospace parts firm. Disser initially will focus on market research and analysis to drive additional revenues and expand NES' market share. Before joining NES' corporate staff, Disser was director of sales and marketing for the company's eastern region and for Albany Ladder.
NES, Evanston, Ill., is No. 4 on the RER 100.