EDCO Celebrates 60th Anniversary of First ARA Exhibit

Leo Swan manning an EDCO exhibit during the 1960s

Since EDCO – Equipment Development Company was established in 1959, the ARA Rental Show has been a staple in spreading the word about our business and our products.

Without a doubt, The Rental Show catalyzed the growth of EDCO into what we’ve become today as we celebrate the 60th anniversary of our business and of our first exhibit at The ARA Rental Show.

That first exhibit in 1959 helped EDCO become a national brand after the original dual-disc grinder was available solely at Rental Tools & Equipment, where EDCO began as a machine development division, in Silver Spring, Maryland. At the 1959 show in Kansas City, Missouri, Leo Swan, one of our co-founders, sold 18 dual-disc grinders and worked hard alongside the other two members of the three-man operation, John Doran and Ed Harding, to fill those orders when he returned home from the show. Since that first exhibit, EDCO hasn’t missed an ARA show.

In 1970, just 11 years removed from that first exhibit, Swan received ARA’s Special Service Award, awarded annually to a supplier who has made an outstanding contribution to the association. At the convention in Atlanta two years later, Swan was a member of an informational panel about cutting tools.

Leo Swan (center) speaking at the lectern about cutting tools in the rental industry at the 1972 ARA Convention in Atlanta (Photo first appeared in Rental Age magazine in 1972)

In 2006, Swan found himself behind a lectern at the convention once again, this time it was to be inducted into the ARA Hall of Fame at the 50th ARA Convention, which was held in Orlando, Florida.

Leo Swan (center) giving his speech at his ARA Hall of Fame induction. Among those on stage with him include his wife, Irene Swan; his son-in-law, Frank Stanczyk; and his grandsons, Danny and Jason Stanczyk

As EDCO has time and time again come back to the ARA show, we’ve watched the show evolve into the must-attend event for people in the line of manufacturing and rentals. The shared progress between EDCO and the rental show coincides with the exponential growth that the rental industry has enjoyed in the last six decades.

A component of our 2018 booth in New Orleans were large kiosks for people to interact with to learn more about our business and products

The fact is, rental shows have changed. What used to be informational literature handouts have now become quick-response codes or touch screen interactives. Gone are the days of photos illustrating what our machines can do, now we have videos to show potential customers the capabilities of our versatiles machines.

Attending the ARA show is important to EDCO because it gives us the chance to show people who have watched our company grow what improvements we’ve made in the last year. At the annual show, we’re also afforded the opportunity to connect with new customers and professionals and highlight what differentiates EDCO from other manufacturers who service the rental industry.

For those attending this year’s show in Anaheim, California, from Feb. 17-20, come check out EDCO at Booth # 3227 to see how we’ve embraced continuously improving and  to find out how we can serve you.



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