Rental firm wins €34.3 million defence contract

United Rentals’ Australian subsidiary Royal Wolf has secured a A$51 million (€34.3 million) contract from the country’s Department of Defence, for the provision of personnel restraint modules (PRMs).

Royal Wolf is a specialist in the design and modification of shipping containers for rental and sale, from 23 centres spread across Australia.

Neil Littlewood, Managing Director at Royal Wolf. (Photo: Royal Wolf)

It will provide 300 of the personnel restraint modules, which are used to transport artillery crews to and from various locations during defence operations - including humanitarian, disaster relief, combat and non-combat missions.

The modules are mounted on the back of artillery trucks and were custom-designed by the company as part of the tender process. They feature radio communications, suspension seats, seat belts and visibility for up to eight crew members.

Neil Littlewood, Managing Director at Royal Wolf, said, “This is the culmination of three years’ work in business development and a significant achievement for the company. It is the largest single one-off project we have done and is a new milestone for Royal Wolf.”

“The PRMs are built for arduous conditions and possibly active environments,” added Littlewood.

“The prototypes, built in Brisbane, underwent a rigorous testing regime. The Royal Wolf team came up with unique solutions to build these customised vehicles, and we engaged a specialist team to augment our existing team.”

In addition to designing and building the units, the scope of Royal Wolf’s contract also call for it to “integrate, test, deliver and obtain certification” for all of the modules, with 74% of their components sourced from Australian businesses.

“We expect to take on eight full-time staff as well as another 25 at any one time, in addition to contracting other third party companies for different trades and teams,” said Littlewood.

The personnel restraint modules will be delivered in two batches within the next three years, and Royal Wolf maintenance support and spare parts for 10 years.

While the company has been an accredited Department of Defence supplier for some time and has carried out smaller projects for the government agency, the winning of this latest contract is the biggest in the company’s 26-year history and was said to have given it “prime contractor status”.

“I am very proud of the work our dedicated team has done, enabling us to be awarded this tender,” said Littlewood. “It provides a platform for winning other defence contracts and working with Tier 1 industry and mining companies.”

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