Hitachi buys French dealer and will expand rental

Hitachi Construction Machinery (Europe) (HCME) has acquired its French dealer Cobemat SAS. The deal includes its two subsidiaries, Cobeloc and MTS, and comes into effect on 1 April 2023.

The OEM said the agreement was a sign of its ambitions to expand its sales and rental network in France, the third largest market in Europe. As part of the strategy, Cobemat will establish a direct rental business.

Gitachi buys Cobemat HCME President Takaharu Ikeda (left) with Cobemat owner Xavier Beaulieu. (Photo: HCME)

Cobemat was established in 1995 and has been the authorised Hitachi dealer for north-west France since 2003. It expanded its territory to cover Paris in 2021, and now represents 50% of the French market.

Sold by its current owners Xavier Beaulieu and Joseph Daniel, the company employs 73 people and has six locations, including its head office in Rennes.

HCME said the decision was driven by the fact that the Île de France province is the largest and most challenging market in France. It said Cobemat would help it capitalise on trends such as major projects, high rental penetration rates, and opportunities on key accounts.

The OEM added that it hoped the French market will help it develop new technologies in combustion engines and electric vehicles.

Hitachi added that Cobemat shared its aim to strengthen rental activities, including a focus on Hitachi’s rental and used equipment programmes, Premium Rental and Premium Used.

“Having built an excellent reputation for Hitachi in north-west France over the years, and more recently in Paris, Cobemat is a strong strategic match for HCME,” said HCME President Takaharu Ikeda.

“Together with them, we look forward to expanding our existing customer base and service capabilities in France.”

Cobemat’s owner Xavier Beaulieu said; “We look forward to entering a new phase of our company’s development as a subsidiary of HCME, which has a reputation for quality and reliability.

“With its support, our company can grow further to become a truly modern dealership and continue to meet the future needs of our customers.”

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