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2024 Market Movers: Partner Rentals

By Brock Huffstutler

June 6, 2024

Partner Rentals CEO Hernan del Aguila

Partner Rentals CEO Hernan del Aguila

A company with deep family-owned roots, Partner Rentals, Kingston, N.Y., owes much of its recent success to a link made with another family-owned entity that helped take the operation to the next level.

“Our growth has been a direct result of partnering with a family office — Seven Isles Capital,” says CEO Hernan del Aguila. “I love their story. They know what it’s like to build good companies and work hard. Our families really gelled.”

The infusion of capital from Seven Isles has enabled Partner Rentals to “share our business with new customers and geographies,” del Aguila says. “In the last year, we’ve grown the number of our locations, employees and fleet size.”

The partnership also keeps Partner Rentals independent, which del Aguila says helps his company stay nimble in a marketplace full of corporate competitors that often are stifled by bureaucracy.

“Our ability to keep the decision making as close to the customer as possible is what makes us unique. We have a good-sized fleet so we can compete, yet we can do the right thing very quickly for our customers,” he says.

Del Aguila has coordinated technology for large companies, so he naturally leverages tech to advance Partner Rentals. “We rely on InTempo Software, RentalMan ERP, SmartEquip for parts procurement, Rouse Analytics for benchmarking, Verizon Connect for vehicle tracking and Samsara for equipment tracking. We also have an app called Rental BI that we developed with Business Intelligence Professionals — it does mobile KPIs and equipment condition reporting,” he says.

Technology, in del Aguila’s view, is what will propel the equipment rental industry over the next decade, and he says the industry would do well to take inspiration from others.

“We will continue to look at parallel industries, like airlines or ecommerce. Equipment rental plays a lot of catch-up to those. What we’re doing today, Amazon started doing five to 10 years ago. Technology is going to continue to pull us in that direction, and I think it’s going to solve some of our financial challenges that have been problematic lately,” he says.

Tips for growth

  • Understand who you want to be. Ask yourself, What kind of customers do I want to have and what kind of industries do I want to cater to? Simplify these to maybe five.
  • Maintain focus. Look forward five years and then work backwards to understand how you’re going to get there in terms of what employees and equipment you’ll need, and go down that road.

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