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United Rentals to acquire Yak Access for $1.1 billion

By Stephen Elliott

March 10, 2024

United Rentals acquisitionUnited Rentals, Stamford, Conn., has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Yak Access, Yak Mat and New South Access & Environmental Solutions (collectively “Yak”), Hattiesburg, Miss., from Platinum Equity for approximately $1.1 billion in cash. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2024, subject to limited contractual conditions.

Yak is a leader in the North American matting industry with a fleet of approximately 600,000 hardwood, softwood and composite mats providing surface protection across both construction and maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) applications. Yak predominantly serves customers in the utility and midstream verticals. For the year ended Dec. 31, 2023, Yak generated $171 million of adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) on $353 million of adjusted revenue across over 40 U.S. states.

United Rentals expects to use a combination of new debt financing and existing capacity under its ABL facility to fund the transaction and related expenses.

Matthew Flannery, president and CEO of United Rentals, said, “Our acquisition of Yak further diversifies and differentiates United Rentals’ Specialty business offerings while also driving shareholder returns. This newly created ‘Matting Solutions’ business will create another adjacency for our company with scale in a large and growing market segment. In addition to its attractive profile across growth, margins and returns, this combination builds upon our Power vertical strategy, where significant investment in generation, transmission and distribution is expected over the next several decades.”

Flannery continued, “Yak meets the strategic, financial and cultural criteria we aim for in acquisitions. We expect this new line of business to augment our Specialty offerings as we continue to execute on our strategy of further differentiating ourselves by providing one-stop shop capabilities for our customers. We look forward to welcoming our new team members to the United Rentals family.”

“Yak is excited to accelerate its business potential as part of United Rentals,” said Frank Bardonaro, CEO of Yak. “This combination will benefit both our customers and existing employees as our established expertise in access solutions complements the broader value proposition United Rentals offers. I’m proud of the leading company we built and am happy we found a great partner for the next chapter.”

Jacob Kotzubei, co-president of Platinum Equity, and Matthew Louie, managing director, Platinum Equity, said in a joint statement: “Over the past six years, we worked with the Yak team to transform the business and are proud that it is now a stronger and more resilient company ready for the next chapter. United Rentals is an outstanding partner and a great long-term fit for Yak going forward.”