Truck rental by OEMs bites the hand that feeds

Laurie Dealer loves a bit of 'this is off the record but...' conversations. This one voiced concerns about truck manufacturers offering in-house rental solutions to operators.

Officially, MAN and Scania have rental divisions, and franchised dealers through other manufacturers run limited rental divisions to service local hauliers. On the whole, Laurie Dealer believes manufacturers have the right to hire out the trucks it makes. 

Over the years used truck dealers have realised that they cannot survive by selling second hand trucks alone, so have spread their wings, and one of the areas they have moved into is truck rental. It acts as a new revenue stream and produces a steady stream of stock available to sell in two-three years time.

The company voicing its concern buy, sell and rent trucks but the subtle difference is that it is independent and has to source trucks from OEMs to build its portfolio of rolling rental stock.

The MD believes that manufacturers' moving into rental in a bigger way bites the hand that feeds it. "Simply on a like-for-like, a manufacturer can dictate rental rates because their overheads will always be cheaper than ours. All that does is drive down price.

"If you are selling on one hand to end users and trade and then competing with it on the other, there is a case for the Office of Fair Trading to get involved because you create a price-control over competitors," he says. "All it needs is a verbal agreement that X can't buy a fleet of trucks for less than Y and it's in place."

Strong words, especially in light of the two price fixing investigations by the OFT and EC currently taking place, and it reflects a cynical, wary view on industry competition

Malcolm Harrison selling B&J Haulage fleet

Malcolm Harrison has an interesting sale coming up in April, reports Laurie Dealer. It looks like some trucks coming off the Somerset-based B&J Haulage fleet.

Some good looking stock here, including 2009-registered Renault Kerax, Lander and Premium eight-leggers, plus some DAF, Hino and Scania trucks.

Sale is on 9th April at Sharpham, near Street in Somerset.