13 Feb Hugg & Hall Equipment Buys Westquip
by D. Ray Tuttle
Published: February 11th, 2013
The Journal Record
OKLAHOMA CITY — Hugg & Hall Equipment of Little Rock, Ark., has acquired Oklahoma City-based Westquip Inc.
Westquip, a Toyota Industrial Equipment dealer, offers rental forklifts in Oklahoma. Westquip also sells forklifts for special applications from other manufacturers including Hoist, Sellick and Combilift.
Financial details were not disclosed.
Tulsa-based Acquisition Advisors represented co-owner Fred Stanley and the owners of Westquip on an exclusive basis.
“Everybody wants a diamond in the rough,” Perkins said. “And every business owner wants to sell for the absolute maximum — and you only do that by working all the best buyers simultaneously.”
Perkins said both the buyer and seller were doing exceptionally well.
“Hugg and Hall is a very strong company,” Perkins said.
Perkins said it was an effort.
“We culled through about 50 candidates and Hugg & Hall was the best,” Perkins said. “We were not sure we could get it done.”
Concerns about confidentiality are real, Perkins said.
“Sometimes, you have to do a little dance,” Perkins said. “Then, once they show they are interested, they have to prove they have the cash — that they are serious.”
Stanley, originally from Massachusetts, came to Oklahoma in 1981 to start the business with a friend. Stanley has been in Oklahoma ever since.
Westquip marked 30 years in business last June.
Since Stanley’s family is all in the northeastern U.S. and Colorado, he decided to sell and move to Colorado to be near more of his family, Perkins said.
With a business the size of Westquip, candidates came from three areas — companies in the industry sector, Westquip employees and equity partners, Perkins said.
“Some individuals within Westquip could buy the company,” Perkins said.
Gradually over time Acquisition Advisors began crossing out potential suitors, then presented the seven best candidates to Stanley.
“They quietly identified and evaluated all the best candidates for us, brought us the top seven,” Stanley said in a statement. “We chose Hugg & Hall. It’s a very good fit.”
Hugg & Hall Equipment, founded in 1956 as Lift Truck Sales & Service, was a distributor of industrial forklifts made by Lift Truck Sales. In 1960, Lift Truck Sales changed its name to Clarklift of Arkansas.
Then, 10 years later, Charles Hugg, the general manager of Clark Equipment’s Chicago factory retail store, purchased Clarklift. That year, 1970, the company operated two locations — Little Rock and
Fort Smith — and had 22 employees.
Today, the company has grown to 260 employees operating in eight locations.
In 1990, Robert Hall became president and John Hugg became chairman when they acquired a controlling interest in the stock of Clarklift of Arkansas from Charles Hugg. In 1995, Clarklift acquired
the stock of Hugg Equipment Co. and began doing business as Hugg and Hall Equipment.
The acquisition of Westquip strengthens Hugg & Hall’s commitment to the markets we serve in Arkansas, Louisiana, east Texas, southern Missouri – and now Oklahoma, John Hugg, president of
Hugg & Hall, said in a statement.