CHICAGO — U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois last month approved Chicago-based National Equipment Services' reorganization plan, allowing the company to emerge from Chapter 11 protection this month.
The company filed for reorganization on June 27, 2003, and retained Carl Marks Consulting Group to implement its turnaround. Since then, NES has secured exit financing and taken significant steps to reduce expenses and improve its cash position. During this period, the company continued to operate as usual at its approximately 160 locations.
“With the court's confirmation of our reorganization plan and the overwhelming support of the bank group, bond holders, and vendors, we're excited about NES Rentals' prospects for moving forward with its financial and operational restructuring,” said Duff Meyercord, chief restructuring officer and partner with Carl Marks Consulting Group. “The company now starts off on solid financial ground with a new $500 million credit facility from a bank group led by our long-term agent, Wachovia Bank.”
NES Rentals' chief financial officer Michael Milligan said the credit facility will enable NES to spend about $90 million in capital expenditures in 2004. Aggressively revitalizing the company's fleet of 48,000 pieces of equipment is central to the company's reorganization.
“We plan to reinvest heavily in NES' fleet over the next several years to meet customer needs,” Milligan said. “Over the past couple years, an industry slowdown has left rental companies with limited capital to invest in their equipment. Our current cash position will allow us to increase our fleet's size and improve fleet mix and quality.”
NES Rentals' interim chief operating officer Doug Booth, also with Carl Marks, said improvements in operation and marketing efficiencies also put the company in excellent position. “We continue to examine ways to improve our services, build our brand name and increase operational efficiencies across the 42 rental businesses acquired since 1996,” he said. “In addition to improvements in our operations, we have successfully consolidated more than a dozen separate information systems into a single database and established a Shared Services Center, which will help us more effectively manage our fleet and enhance customer service nationwide.”
NES is No. 5 on the RER 100.