Sunstate Equipment recently appointed Bob Krause chief operations officer, effective immediately.
A long-time industry veteran, Krause will now lead General Rental and Trench Division Operations, sales and marketing, and business excellence for the 45-year-old company. Headquartered in Phoenix, Sunstate Equipment currently has 93 locations throughout 15 states, with accelerated growth on the horizon.
“As Sunstate continues our ongoing evolution from a small mom-and-pop rental company in the desert, opened back in 1977, to a leading national equipment rental supplier, internationally recognized for our world-class customer service, we are pleased to have Bob step into this role,” said Chris Watts, Sunstate Equipment president and CEO. “In the two years he’s been with us, his depth and breadth of rental experience have been a tremendous asset and will greatly complement the next phase of our growth.”
Krause joined Sunstate Equipment in 2020 as vice president of business excellence, where he invested his time learning as much as he could about Sunstate’s rich history, core values and culture, all of which were fundamental in Krause’s decision to accept the position.
“It was immediately clear to me that Sunstate was a company where our shared values aligned,” Krause recalled of his first meeting with Watts. “I already knew about the strong reputation that Sunstate had in the marketplace, but I was not aware of how strong and good the culture was until I met Chris.”
Sunstate’s position in the industry has been long established as one that puts people first, nurturing a culture that empowers employees to provide best-in-class rental solutions to their business partners. Upholding their unique total team approach is paramount to Sunstate’s long-term growth plans as it continues expanding into new markets and specialized industry sectors.
“Bob’s personal and professional values align perfectly with our people-first culture,” said Watts. “This ensures that as we continue to grow and evolve, we will always remain true to the most basic of principles that have brought us the success we have enjoyed for the past 45 years.”
Nearly 40 years in rental
Krause brings 37 years of rental experience to the role, including top positions with Blueline Equipment Rental where he was corporate vice president of business excellence, United Rentals (regional vice president – western United States, Alaska, western Canada), and HERC, where he first cut his teeth in the industry as an inside sales rep to learn the business from the ground up after earning a degree in Construction Management from North Dakota State University.
“I am extremely honored and humbled at the opportunity to become the chief operating officer of Sunstate Equipment,” Krause said. “I look forward to working with the entire Sunstate team as we continue to grow our business, maintain our extraordinary culture, and promote our brand by providing exceptional customer service across the markets that we serve.”
Founded in 1977 by equipment rental pioneer Mike Watts (now retired), Sunstate now operates under the leadership of president and CEO Chris Watts. In 2017, Sumitomo Corp., a leading global investment firm, purchased full interest shares, positioning Sunstate for solid, sustainable growth. For more information visit www.sunstateequip.com. Sunstate Equipment Co. is No. 9 on the RER 100.