Photo by Sunbelt Rentals
Sunbelt Boom Lift 60 Rt

Sunbelt Parent Acquires Canada’s Largest Film Production Equipment Rental Company

Dec. 11, 2019
Ashtead plc, parent company of Sunbelt Rentals, has acquired William F. White International, Canada’s largest film, TV and digital production equipment rental business.

Ashtead plc, parent company of Sunbelt Rentals, has acquired William F. White International, Canada’s largest film, TV and digital production equipment rental business. Ashtead paid CDN $234 million (about U.S. $177 million) for the company. 

White’s customers include major Hollywood studios such as Warner Bros., Walt Disney, Universal Studios, MGM and Lionsgate, as well as Silicon Valley players like Amazon Prime and Apple as they enter the TV streaming industry and require original content, the Hollywood Reporter said.

White operates out of 13 locations in Canada and has more than 400 employees. The company has production equipment such as lighting, cameras, generators, camera cranes and jibs, specialty heads and mounts. The company rents out six production studios in Vancouver and Toronto, where film production has been increasing significantly.

“White significantly enhances our capability to provide equipment to the film and television production market where increased demand for content is driving high growth opportunities,” said Ashtead Group CEO Brendan Horgan, who now becomes co-chairman of Whites along with Whites CEO and chairman Paul Bronfman.

To accommodate its Hollywood production boom, Ontario is seeing a record number of new studios being built, the Hollywood Reporter said. CBS Television Studios recently opened a 260,000-square-foot studio with six soundstages in Toronto after Netflix launched its own production hub in the city by taking long-term leases on eight soundstages at separate studios, Pinewood Toronto Studios and Cinespace Films Studios.

And Pinewood Toronto Studios, which currently has around 325,000 square feet of soundstages and hosts shooting for the Star Trek live-action TV series for CBS All Access, has plans to build another 200,000 square feet in production space.