TOM Vehicle Rental acquires Solar Self Drive

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Commercial vehicle hire company TOM Vehicle Rental has acquired East-London based Solar Self Drive for an undisclosed sum as part of its growth plans.

Solar Self Drive has a mixed fleet of more than 200 vehicles, and offers van and truck rental to businesses from a depot in Barking, Essex.

James Rafferty, group sales and operations director at TOM Vehicle Rental, said the business was an "attractive strategic fit" for his company's growth plans, taking its total fleet to more than 10,500 vehicles and boosting its presence in the south of England.

The Barking depot is TOM Vehicle Rental's fourth site in England, joining Manchester, Castleford and Nottingham.

It also has six locations in its native Scotland.

Rafferty said: “The east London location gives us a great platform for further growth, opening up untapped markets in Greater London and the south east, and completing a backbone of depots which tactically will strengthen our position as our rental business continues to evolve.

"We expect to do more business with some existing customers and believe it will enhance our appeal to larger blue-chip customers with national operations, some of whom we’ve courted previously but weren’t able to do business with as we didn’t have a depot in the region”

Rafferty added that it was an ‘exciting time’ for the company as it was experiencing strong month-on-month organic growth in their number of vehicles on hire and this natural growth would be supplemented by the bolt-on acquisition.  

He said they were "constantly" evaluating other deals in the rental sector and confirmed that they were well placed to pursue any opportunities which fitted their target profile.

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