Reno Building Boom Spawns Demand for 43-ft. Scissor Lifts

All of a manufacturer's market research, planning, focus groups, design meetings, and manufacturing quality cannot ensure a product will live up to its potential.

Nearly always, a product's acceptance or rejection by potential users determines its success or failure.

According to Tony Lucero, H&E sales territory representative in Reno, Nev., customer demand for the Genie GS-4390 scissor lift ranks it as a success.

With near-historic growth fueling a building boom in Reno, the Genie lifts' easy use, functionality, and reliability have earned them popularity among customers on jobsites throughout the area.

As a result, the Reno branch of H&E Equipment Services (H&E) has seen the potential for additional rentals, sales, parts, and service, as it serves contractors working feverishly amid the boom.

Biggest Little Boom

After overcoming the economic downturn that hit the area at least as hard as most the country, H&E’s Reno branch is seeing a strong resurgence. Fueled by construction of Tesla Motors' massive “gigafactory,” industry has been pouring into Reno and surrounding areas.

Manufacturing plants, data centers, and distribution warehouses that often push a million sq. ft. of floor space are popping up in almost every part of the city and surrounding areas.

“We’ve been keeping an eye on things and seeing this coming for some time now,” said Tony Lucero, H&E Reno territory sales representative.

Lucero recounted that Wal-Mart built a huge distribution center in the area several years ago, followed by one for PetSmart. More recently, Apple Computers' construction of a data center seemed to quicken the pace of development, said Lucero, but he calls Tesla’s five-million-sq.-ft. gigafactory a "game changer.”

TRIC’s a Treat

The epicenter of all the area's unbridled growth is the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center (TRIC). Many of the new structures currently being erected in the area have ceilings of 48 ft., literally a perfect fit for the Genie GS-4390 scissor lift manufactured by Terex Aerial Work Platforms (AWP).

Lucero said that crews from many trades prefer the Genie GS-4390 scissor lift because of the extended working area of its deck, the availability of AC power to the platform, and the non-marking tires—a requirement on many jobs. "Since this [building] boom took hold in the area, this has been the machine of choice, and should continue to be so.”

Great on the Flats

Technically a rough-terrain machine, the Genie GS-4390 scissor lift also works well on pavement. Its 49-ft. working height is effective for reaching high ceilings in the tilt-wall structures that are popping up all over the area.

“Customers like the deck, which, with both platforms extended, offers more than 21 ft. of length,” says Lucero. “That feature alone is popular with trades needing both work area and payload capacity.”

All About Communication

To anticipate change rather than just respond to it, H&E turns to its most trusted resource. “We maintain a constant line of communication with our customers so that we can know what they need, not just tomorrow but next month, the month after that, and so on,” said Lucero.

Because roughly 85-90% of H&E's Reno fleet is “blue,” Lucero said that Genie products play a key role in meeting growth demands as the company moves forward.

Lucero also said that Genie's commitment to support also plays a big role. “They are huge proponents of training, often sending their techs to help our techs when new machines are introduced," he said. "That speaks volumes about their commitment to this relationship."

Meeting the Reno area's demand for equipment will take a combination of Genie keeping the flow of new equipment coming and H&E bringing in fleet units from places where demand is not as strong. "It’s a balancing act, but it’s one that our corporate team in Baton Rouge, La., does very well,” said Lucero.

Advantage in Service

Although the beehive of construction work around Reno makes competition for rental business fierce, Lucero feels H&E has an advantage.

“We have a service team that we feel is the best in this market,” he said, noting that competitors may have two or three service technicians, whereas H&E has nine, so it can respond quickly to get a customer up and running. "We even work on customer-owned machines," he said.

Lucero explained that projects are bid tightly and margins are relatively slim. "Everyone understands that downtime is lost time and a drain on the bottom line," he said. "I feel we do a better job than anyone else at providing the best product and the support of a first-class service team.”

Even though H&E has about 70 locations nationwide, Lucero said the company still goes to great lengths to personalize its business and put customer satisfaction ahead of everything else.

“If we have a customer come to us asking for something we don’t supply, we’ll help them find it,” he said. The idea is that the customer will remember the effort and eventually become an H&E customer.

Lucero feels that no one is better poised than H&E to meet the changes happening in Reno. "It’s an exciting time for sure,” he said.