RERMAG

Fluor to Sell Equipment Dealerships

ALISO VIEJO, Calif. — Reflecting the company's commitment to focus on its core businesses of engineering, procurement, construction and asset management, Fluor Corp., the parent company of Ameco, will divest its five U.S. equipment dealerships.

The five companies include South Carolina Commercial, J.W. Burress Inc., Stith Equipment, SMA and S&R Equipment. Ameco will remain part of Fluor's core service offering, providing equipment services including fleet outsourcing and construction site services to industry. According to Jim Liston, vice president of Fluor Equipment Dealerships, the company will consider selling these dealers as one package or one company at a time, whichever brings the best value.

“We have just begun the process of offering these companies for sale individually, so we are not yet at the stage of having any pending sales,” he said.

Four of the dealership companies were acquired by Ameco within the past five years, and the fifth is an Ameco-created company.

J.W. Burress Inc., based in Roanoke, Va, was formed by Jack Burress in 1934. Among its distinctions over the past 30 years, the company has become one of the largest Grove distributors, and one of the first and largest Hitachi distributors in the United States. Burress also distributes Daewoo, Gomaco, Gradall and others. The company was acquired by Ameco in 1997, and operates nine locations in Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina.

H.H. Stith Sr. founded Stith Equipment in 1954. Georgia-based Stith was acquired by Ameco in 1997, along with SMA in California. As distributors for Komatsu, Grove, Moxy, Gradall and Compaction America, Stith has eight locations throughout Georgia. SMA represents Komatsu and Moxy through seven locations in California.

S&R Equipment was founded in 1957 by Richard Schmitz to service the farm community in northwestern Ohio. Since then, the company has shifted its focus to the construction industry and is a leader in its region providing rentals, sales and service for JLG, Genie, Gehl and Ingersoll-Rand aerial work platforms, high lift and welding equipment. After years of consistent growth in equipment lines, facilities and technology, the company was sold to Ameco in 1996. Today, S&R operates from seven locations in Michigan, Indiana and Ohio.

In 1974, Ameco founded the fifth company, South Carolina Commercial (SCC). It began as the retail sales and rental wing for Ameco and was soon followed by a long partnership with Case Equipment. During the past 27 years, SCC has added Grove, JLG, Lull and Schaeff to the list and currently has four locations in South Carolina: Greenville, Columbia, Myrtle Beach and Charleston.

Greenville, S.C.-based Ameco is No. 11 on the RER 100.

(Reproduced with permission from Construction Equipment guide and author Darryl Seland).

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