Aerial Outlook 2013: Which Forces Will Most Impact the 2013 Work-Platform Market?

Leaders of JLG, Snorkel, Skyjack, and Terex AWP weigh in on the economic, political and market issues that will drive revenue and profit in work-platform rentals

Aerial lifts make up enough of the North American rental market that what happens in the segment has a large impact on the entire rental industry. Rental asked the leaders of Skyjack, Terex AWP, JLG, and Snorkel where the aerial market's at and where it's headed.

Q: What are the primary forces of change affecting the aerial-work-platform market?

Frank Nerenhausen, president of JLG: Broad-based recovery helps all industries and we're seeing solid expansion in multiple areas. Energy is really growing in certain parts of the country; industrial, residental and nonresidential are all growing. There's a pretty wide bandwidth of optimism in those various segments and that all fuels good solid gowth and optimism for 2013 and beyond.

Dave Smith, president of Snorkel: The circumstances around politics play a big role. Right now, the rest of the world is watching the U.S. and what's going to happen in our government. We need to tell the world what our plan is and let the dust settle so consumer confidence can continue to grow.

Aside from politics, credit is also an issue. Banks aren't interested in getting anything less than a triple-A credit rating when loaning money at 3%. If the interest rate loosens up a little bit, it might motivate some banks to lend more money to the industry. That could have a positive effect on growth or at least more aggressive replacement.

Brad Boehler, president of Skyjack: Safety has always been and will continue to be a key driver, both in setting rental industry demand and in terms of product performance. Certainly the issue of sustainability is moving up the agenda despite tougher economic times. The aerial work platform industry itself is faced with emission regulations that have to be complied with on internal combustion-based models. In addition, the electrically powered models may see more focus and demand. However, overall the key issues remain reliability and reducing life cycle costs.

Matt Fearon, president of Terex AWP: Contractors need the ability to work more safely and efficiently on the jobsite. The aerial market is very well established in North America and Western Europe and we are beginning to see safety standards being applied to different parts of the world that will further drive demand for our types of products.

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Aerial Outlook 2013: Current State of the North American Work-Platform Market

Leaders of the big four aerial-work-platform makers assess the state of business today, and their outlooks for the remainder of 2013

Aerial Outlook 2013: How the North American Market Compares with the World

Leaders of Terex AWP, Snorkel and Skyjack discuss the direction of global work-platform business -- hot spots and cool -- with that of North America

Aerial Outlook 2013: What's the Direction of New Product Development?

Leaders of Skyjack, Terex AWP, JLG, and Snorkel offer a sneak peek at products coming in 2013 that will have the most impact on the AWP rental business