Despite the soft conditions in Europe, Hertz said it was encouraged by the operating environment in the United States and said it anticipated double-digit volume growth in the U.S. car rental business in the first quarter of 2012. Hertz said its optimism was based on solid advance reservation build-up and the expectation of approximately 20 percent rental rate revenue growth in the U.S. equipment rental business.
Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. comments came as Hertz reported fourth quarter 2011 worldwide revenues of $2.0 billion, an increase of 9.7 percent year-over-year (a 9.8 percent increase excluding the effects of foreign currency). Worldwide car rental revenues for the quarter increased 9.5 percent year-over-year (a 9.6 percent increase excluding the effects of foreign currency) to $1,695.2 million.
Worldwide revenues for the full year 2011 were $8.3 billion, an increase of 9.7 percent over the prior year (a 7.4 percent increase excluding the effects of foreign currency). Worldwide car rental revenues for the year increased 9.2 percent (a 6.8 percent increase excluding the effects of foreign currency) to $7.1 billion.
Mark P. Frissora, Hertz' chairman and CEO, said, “Our record results for the fourth quarter and full year 2011 are attributable to an equal emphasis on efficiency and revenue growth, which were achieved despite deteriorating macro conditions in Europe. Hertz generated over $450 million of efficiency savings last year, bringing the cumulative five-year total to over $2.1 billion, representing 25 percent of our total cost base."
"The results of our growth initiatives were record worldwide car rental revenues for full year 2011, on record transaction day growth, and the fourth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth in the equipment rental business. These achievements capped a year where Hertz almost doubled 2010 adjusted pre-tax income and beat the previous, pre-recession record in 2007, on $387.2 million lower revenues," Frissora said.
"We also refinanced almost $7 billion of debt on favorable terms last year, further strengthening our balance sheet. A continued emphasis on technology-driven efficiencies and customer service initiatives, the advancement of an asset-light business model, and a rich mixture of car and equipment rental growth initiatives, are the recipe for sustained financial improvement in 2012 and beyond,” Frissora said.