Element Fleet Management's corporate transformation continues as the fleet management company...

Element Fleet Management's corporate transformation continues as the fleet management company improves its balance sheet and profitability.

Photo courtesy of Element Fleet Management.

Element Fleet Management Corp. recorded a profitable first quarter, as it strengthened its balance sheet with $150 million in planned benefits from its company transformation plan that was announced in October.

The Toronto-based fleet management company recorded $122 million in operating income, or 21 cents per share, from its core fleet business, which was an increase of $33.7 million (5 cents) from the first quarter of 2018.

"Our intense focus on transforming our core business continues to create value by strengthening our competitive position, improving our service offering and keeping us on track to deliver the previously communicated profitability gains," said Jay Forbes, Element's president and CEO. "By deleveraging our balance sheet through a greater degree of syndication, we accelerate our ability to access lower-cost capital, enhance our return on equity, and manage client concentration limits."

Element expects to improve operating income by about $52 million in 2019.

Element's transformation under its strategic plan remains "ahead of schedule," according to a release. Forbes reiterated this message in a letter to investors.

"When a company has a skilled and determined team with a clear strategy, and creates the conditions for success by instilling confidence and aligning incentives, that company is bound to find additional, unanticipated opportunities to create value," Forbes wrote.

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