Volvo Rents Tapping Into Panama City's Construction Boom

Aug. 8--PANAMA CITY -- In an effort to tap into the Panama City area's construction growth, an Asheville, N.C.-based equipment rental company has announced plans to open a new store here by the end of the year.

Volvo Construction Equipment Rents is looking for a franchisee with a liquid net worth of at least $500,000 to operate a store here.

The company, which is a division of Volvo Construction Equipment North America, operates more than 65 locations in North America. Volvo Rents' stores lease construction equipment that includes backhoes, compact excavators and motor graders.

Nick Mavrick, Volvo Rents' vice president of global strategy and marketing, said prospective franchisees can qualify for up to $5 million in construction financing per store.

Mavrick said the company regards Panama City and Tallahassee, collectively, as growth areas.

He cited a McGraw Hill Construction forecast that projected 2006 construction spending in the Panama City area at $420 million, with 2008 projections at $451 million.

"So, it's a large market to us and it's growing," Mavrick said.

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