URI lowered its 4th Quarter earnings forecast, and expects a Q4 Charge of $1.1 billion (mostly from acquisitions made between 1997-2000).
URI announced on 6/9 that it would launch a "Dutch auction" to buyback over 27 million shares for up to $679 million. By using the dutch auction, shareholders can indicate the exact quantity and price (within URI's price range) they wish to sell. These shares represent about 31.4% of its total outstanding stock.
URI announced that its efforts to refocus the company on equipment rentals has brought positive changes as rental revenue increased to $571, up from $567 in Q1 2006. This increase was spurred by a 0.7% increase of time utilization in Q1, despite a 0.6% decline in rental rates.
United Rentals announced record EPS during 2007. EPS from 2007 was $2.76, a 21.1% increase from $2.28 in 2006. Increases in rental revenue and time utilization were the main contributing factors to this increase in EPS.
URI announced expected diluted earnings per share (EPS) for 2007 to be between $2.55 to $2.60, a 12% increase from 2006 ($2.28). In 2008 the company expects diluted EPS of $2.80 to $3.00 based on expected rental revenue growth of 3% to $2.71 billion.
On 12/21, a Delaware court ruled against URI in essentially trying to coerce Cerebrus Management, a private-equity firm, to a proposed $4 billion acquisition. Cerebrus had opted out of the proposal in mid November, claiming uncertainty in the credit and financing markets as reason to pull out of the takeover bid. Instead of the proposed $4 billion, URI investors will only receive a $100 million "break-up" fee from Cerebrus. URI's stocks slid 3.7% to $22.50
Cerebrus Management announced its withdrawl of its proposed $4 billion buyout of United Rentals. The buyout was valued at $34.50 per share in cash. URI's shares dropped 30.9% or $10.51 to $23.50.
United Rentals announced it would seek suitable buyers on 4/10. Given their strong financial report of Q4 2006 into Q1 2007, URI appeared to be an attractive buyout candiadate. Share of URI rose 16.4%, or $4.51 to $32.07, the highest URI's stocks have been since June 2006.