20 billion reasons why commercial accounts matter


March 28, 2016

Photo: ©iStock.com/OGphoto

Photo: ©iStock.com/OGphoto

Pests are equal opportunity offenders. They threaten public health and property at workplaces as well as homes. According to a recent study commissioned by Rentokil Initial (parent company of Reading, Pa.-based Rentokil North America), pest infestations cost U.S. businesses an estimated $13.2 billion in lost revenue and $6.8 billion in increased operating expenses annually.

I’m no accountant, but I believe that adds up to $20 billion down the drain every year.

It also adds up to significant opportunities for those pest management professionals (PMPs) looking to build their commercial pest services — and related relationships, revenues and margins — in 2016 and beyond.

The Rentokil research, conducted by Opinion Matters, yielded responses from more than 200 decision makers at companies located across the country. Here are some of the survey’s other findings:

  • 90 percent of businesses suffered at least one pest infestation during the past five years.
  • On average, businesses battle pest infestations every 20 months.
  • 36 percent report their pest infestations last longer than two weeks.
  • 25 percent incurred infestation-related maintenance and repair cost increases.
  • Up to 18 percent report higher replacement costs because pests damage equipment, raw materials and/or finished goods.
  • 36 percent say pest infestations have a negative impact on staff morale.
  • Approximately two-thirds of businesses are concerned pest infestations could trigger the loss of reputation and/or increased risk of compensation claims and fines.

“Pests don’t discriminate, so any size or type of business operating worldwide can be vulnerable and become prone to pests, experiencing damaging — and costly — consequences, as this study indicates,” says Randolph Carter, vice president of marketing for Rentokil North America. “While an infestation may not cause the complete closure of a business, it certainly causes a host of disruptions, from maintenance and repair expense, to replacement of stock due to the contamination of raw materials and ingredients, and lowered staff morale.”

Some pest management companies serve only, or mostly, residential customers. Many PMPs believe the regulations, corporate red tape and margins on the commercial side aren’t worth it. Perhaps some of these PMPs will think again and opt to build their commercial pest management services and sales in 2016.

The bottom line: Like pests, the dollar doesn’t discriminate. Whether it comes from a homeowner or business owner, it’s still legal tender in all 50 states.


Leave A Comment

  1. Nate Curran says:

    The commercial market is very hard to break into unless you are a large established company. Nevertheless, if you can even get a few consistent monthly accounts it can build up your residual profits and also build credibility among prospective customers.