A second strong business for Prime

23 sep 1998

Stockholm, September 23, 1998--- The Atlas Copco Group has announced that it will combine the operations of its U.S. subsidiaries Atlas Copco Rental, Inc., and Prime Service, Inc., to better satisfy the needs of industrial firms for rental equipment. "Combining these operations will consolidate our leading position in the equipment rental business," says Giulio Mazzalupi, President and CEO of Atlas Copco.

"We are capitalizing on the competencies the two companies currently have and creating a second solid business segment for rentals to industrial users," Mazzalupi notes. Atlas Copco Rental today mainly rents the Group's oil-free air compressors. Prime Service rents all types of equipment, chiefly to the construction industry and, through a recent acquisition, also power generators to industrial customers. From October these two industrial rental operations will form a new business unit in the Prime Division and share services such as administration and information systems for better synergies.  In June 1997, Atlas Copco made a major move into the equipment rental business by acquiring Prime Service, Inc.. Atlas Copco evaluated the operating and management systems of Prime Service and has now decided to combine the Atlas Copco Rental business with Prime Service. Each company brings its competitive products and expert staff to the new entity. The equipment rental market in the United States is estimated at USD 20 billion today and forecast to continue to grow.  Thomas Bennett, President and CEO of Prime is excited about the synergy these companies can offer the marketplace. "It is a win-win situation. The combination will allow us to offer our customers value-added services through our expanded product range and expertise from a single service provider. At the same time the total number of locations will increase."  Prime is a division in the Atlas Copco Group, operating in the equipment rental business in the United Stated and Mexico. Through the combination with Atlas Copco Rental, the company's presence will expand and the number of its locations will increase to 172. After the merger, the company will employ some 3,000 people. For further information please contact:  Robin Bennett, Director of Marketing, Prime Service, Inc.  phone: +1 281 578-5600  Annika Berglund, Vice President Corporate Communications, (media)  phone: +46 8 743 8070, mobile: +46 70 322 8070 [email protected]  Hans Ola Meyer, Senior Vice President, Group Treasurer, Atlas Copco AB (analysts)  phone: +46 8 743 8292, mobile: +46 70 588 8292 [email protected]