John Green, former owner of Sacramento, Calif.-based River City Rentals, recently opened a new rental business in nearby Auburn, Calif. Partnering with former Placer Equipment Rentals owner Steve Koehler and veteran Placer Equipment and NationsRent rentalman Eric Jensen, the three opened Placer Equipment Rentals and Ready Mix in Auburn earlier this year.
The three partners have long histories in the rental business. Koehler was general manager for U.S. Rentals in Sacramento in the 1970s, with Green serving as sales manager. In 1977 Koehler opened Placer Equipment Rentals and Green took the general manager position at U.S. until he left to open River City Rentals in 1984. Both men sold their companies to NationsRent in the late 1990s and joined forces when their noncompete agreements expired. Jensen joined Koehler at Placer Equipment in 1980, continued with NationsRent when it bought Placer and became a partner with Green and Koehler at the newly formed Placer Equipment Rentals.
Koehler told RER he has been amazed at the success so far of the new company. “We got a number of our old employees back,” he said. “And so many of our old customers have come back, as if we’ve never been away.”
Green, Koehler and Jenkins purchased the facility of a masonry business and kept that part of the business under the direction of masonry expert Tim Barentine, while adding a general contractor-oriented rental equipment inventory.
“The masonry part of the business has been a surprise success,” Koehler added.