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Petit Forestier Celebrates its 20 Years of International Presence

Throughout 2016, Petit Forestier is celebrating 20 years on the international stage. In June, it is the United Kingdom's turn to be honoured: a focus on a highly competitive market.

We have been present in the United Kingdom for 13 years. Petit Forestier first set foot across the Channel in 2003 when it acquired VIA Location during an external growth operation. This strategic choice initially enabled the company to analyse and understand the nature and challenges of the market before establishing the Petit Forestier brand.

Unlike other European countries, Petit Forestier UK did not need to promote the advantages of renting. It is widely recognised that British people have a natural penchant towards renting and favour service over ownership. On the other hand, Petit Forestier had to adapt their development strategy to compete on equal terms with the many established rental companies and to demonstrate the quality of its service.

"Today, Petit Forestier's reputation is based on its reliability and performance. We are not seen as a French company, but as a well-known international brand, specialising in refrigeration on a European level", explains Eric Forestier, International Managing Director.

Three differentiating factors have played a significant role in this perception:

  • the fact that Petit Forestier has its own technical workshops ensures optimal management of our fleet.
  • the expansion of our network, which favours establishing branches in geographical and logistic areas which will lead to economic development, while bearing in mind that the United Kingdom represents several "constitutive nations" which Petit Forestier must be able to serve locally.
  • our ability to offer innovative products and a range offering a large variety of solutions. You have to remember that in the United Kingdom, the refrigerated van is king! However, thanks to our subsidiary Lecapitaine, we can offer fully-tailored vehicle bodies. Our 3.5t Refrigerated Box has even more technical advantages today (load, volume and speed, etc.) and could well be the key to the future. To give an example, one of our "major corporate clients" has recently renovated its large fleet of vans, replacing most of them with Refrigerated Boxes.

However, market maturity also has its drawbacks: rates have to remain appealing in spite of increasingly high demands. This compels us to develop intelligent "win-win" solutions, where the quality of our 24/7 full service makes all the difference!
Today, Petit Forestier UK has a fleet of 4,000+ vehicles.