ERA releases 2021 Market Report

By Belinda Smart24 November 2021

The European Rental Association (ERA) has released its 2021 Market Report. Developed with the ‎support of the ERA Statistics Committee, the ERA Market Report has been the reference source ‎of intelligence for the European equipment rental market since 2008. ‎

In 2020, equipment rental companies and other companies providing rental services generated a total rental turnover of more than EUR 25.2 billion in these countries.‎

At a constant exchange rate, the equipment rental industry in the 15 countries analysed and the Baltic region declined by 7.2% in 2020. In 2021, there is an estimated growth of 6.3%, with 2022 forecast to increase by 5.6%, also at a constant exchange rate.

The overarching theme from this year’s report is that 2020 was a difficult year for all the markets covered, ‎even for those that managed to remain positive amidst the pandemic. Consequently, some markets fell ‎considerably (France, Italy, Spain, UK), while others also lost ground but fared better overall (Switzerland, ‎Sweden, Germany). This trend continued into the first quarter of 2021 before seeing returns closer to pre-‎pandemic levels of activity later in the year. ‎

The COVID-19 pandemic took Europe by surprise last year and continues to hamper the recovery in some ‎markets, both directly and indirectly. The immediate impact differed from country to country. The Nordic ‎countries, which did not lock down and with almost no site shutdowns, performed better than southern ‎Europe and the UK, which faced severe lockdowns and disruptions to activity.

With Brexit having now taken effect, the ‎UK finds itself in a difficult position as the sourcing of materials now incurs increased costs, and the labour ‎shortage, present across Europe, is further exacerbated.‎

The reopening of most European economies after the first quarter of 2021 proved beneficial for rental ‎activity as construction was able to pick up and other sectors of the economy also reopened. ‎

The performance throughout the rest of the year improved in most markets and now points to a solid ‎growth forecast for 2021, mainly in Southern Europe and the UK, which were the worst-hit regions, while ‎growth in Nordic countries and Eastern Europe remains more constrained.‎

It is important to stress the extreme conditions of 2020 and 2021, which have been analysed with our ‎forecasts. Large peaks are expected this year, and further significant growth is expected in the short term. ‎

The report is available digitally for ERA members (EUR 500) and for non-members (EUR 1,200). To order a copy, please contact the European Rental Association at era@erarental.org.

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