Morris Leslie acquires plant hire division of English firm

Morris Leslie acquires plant hire division of English firm

Morris Leslie's HQ

Perthshire plant hire firm Morris Leslie has bought the plant hire division of Selwood for an undisclosed sum.

The acquisition will add five depots and 2,000 machines to Morris Leslie will also see 70 staff transfer to the firm.

The new premises are in Birmingham, Bournemouth, Bristol, Exeter and Southampton.

Group operations director Graham Ogilvie told The Courier: “The opportunity came up in the middle of July so we’ve been able to complete the deal quite quickly.

“It very much complements our business and gives us an expanded UK area map.”

Of the 2,000 assets acquired, around 1,300 are big single items, taking the firm’s fleet to 4,500.

Although the initial investment is significant, many more millions will follow.

The Morris Leslie model is to buy new machines, hire them for a short amount of time and then re-sell around the world.

“It’s not just the initial deal, it’s the reinvestment that will come on the back of that,” Mr Ogilvie added.

“Historically their assets have run longer than Morris Leslie and we will replace them.

“Selwood customers will have the new modern plant hire fleet with the same people and service, with new equipment.”

The announcement comes as Morris Leslie publish new financial accounts which show a return to profit.

In the year to April 30 2021, the firm made a pretax profit of £2.6m compared to a £4.6m loss as Covid impacted the business in 2020. Turnover dipped by £1m to £58.7m.

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