Hire calling

As a daughter company of Denmark’s leading building and construction comapny, Ajos focuses on equipment hire

With more than 5000 employees and a £1.1 billion turnover, MT Højgaard is Denmark’s leading building and construction company and operates nationwide on all sizes of projects. As a frontrunner in the development of efficient construction processes, MT Højgaard’s equipment hire activities for both in-house use and external customers were brought together under the name Ajos on 1st January 2005.

Ajos Issue 2 2008 bThis product programme, which is among the strongest in the market, comprises a fleet of contracting machinery, cranes, hoists, workmen’s cabins, site generators and other building site equipment. Ajos’ activities are carried out from a countrywide network of plant hire centres and it undertakes projects for external clients as well as the six other divisions of MT Højgaard, which is among Denmark’s largest inventory of contracting machines, cranes, building hoists, on-site cabins and vehicles.

Ajos progressed from operating as a division to becoming established as a daughter company earlier this year. Marketing consultant Carsten Andresen elaborates on this change and Ajos’ services: “On 1st January 2008 we became a daughter company to the largest construction organisation in Denmark so today we are known as Ajos a/s, although we have operated under our own Ajos brand for years. Besides MT Højgaard, we’ve had other customers in recent years and our target is to work with more industrial and construction companies.We provide everything that is used when building or renovating, such as power, cranes, cabins and machines, and rent out all kinds of equipment for use in the construction sector.”

Now, Ajos is launching a new concept, a high-end portable cabin, which stands out in the market for its quality. Department head Jesper Lintrup reveals the thinking behind these new temporary offices: “The reason we wanted to develop and create this concept is because there is nothing similar in Denmark today.We’re offering temporary offices that have nothing to do with construction sites whatsoever – they are mainly for the pharmaceutical industry, and IT and consultancy companies that need offices for up to three years at the high-end of the scale. We have worked with two esteemed architecture companies and with respect to design, and the type of material we’re using, there is nothing comparable in Denmark so we know there’s a market for them.”Ajos Issue 2 2008 c

Considering the new concept, Carsten adds: “When the customer wants to rent this sort of high-end temporary office, they are looking for quality and good structural design so they are less focused on price. Normally with portable cabins, it’s the other way around and quality comes second. However, because our new temporary offices were designed with architects in Denmark, there is a strong focus on comfort and excellence. This has raised the price but our type of customers are more concerned with quality.”

Jesper believes that Ajos’ temporary offices will be successful as the current market conditions are positive and the cabins offer significant advantages: “We’re generally in a strong position as we’re one of the top three companies in Denmark in our field.We have consultants who have analysed the market for high-end temporary offices and in Sweden there have already been 250,000 square metres built so we see a market for them, although it’s new for Denmark. People don’t want to sit in an old office when they can work in a superior environment. At times, companies feel they’re not in a position to build anything new because they want to invest in their core business, sales division or development department instead of constructing new offices, so they see renting offices as more appealing as they’ll know the costs upfront each month.”

This ability to meet its clients’ needs is one of Ajos’s key strengths and Carsten believes that Ajos’ product offering is both extensive and unique: “We’re able to supply everything that a construction company needs whereas some of our competitors don’t have cranes or if they do, they can’t also offer temporary offices that could rival ours. Ajos has everything under one umbrella so we can cater to all needs, and the fact that we’re a subsidiary of such a hugely successful company gives us a position of strength.”

Agreeing, chief executive officer Torben Bloch Nielsen concludes: “Our strong point is that we offer a variety of different products and can deliver almost everywhere in Denmark. All rental companies are getting much bigger, which means we will have to grow if we too want to be powerful in the market, but our aim has always been to
become one of the largest rental companies in Denmark, and the most competent player in the market.”