EBJ's Weekly News Update
Environmental Business Journal's summary of the weekly environmental business news
1. DALRIADA CONSORTIUM WINS PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP IN N. IRELAND
The Dalriada Water Limited Consortium, consisting of Earth Tech, Kelda Group and Farrans, has signed a 25-year contract with Northern Ireland’s Department for Regional Development Water Service to upgrade the water treatment facilities in several Northern Ireland communities. The contract represents the first public-private partnership in the drinking water arena in Northern Ireland, according to an Earth Tech release. Earth Tech will provide design and construction management services for the $207.4-million capital improvement project, which will bring the water systems into compliance with European Union standards.
2. JONES & STOKES ACQUIRES WYOMING WILDLIFE CONSULTANCY
Jones & Stokes (Sacramento, CA) has acquired Thunderbird Wildlife Consulting, Inc. (Gillette, WY), a provider of wildlife consulting and permitting services to public and private clients. John Cowdery, Jones & Stokes’ president and CEO, commented that Thunderbird Wildlife Consulting’s eight professionals “provide us with an anchor point to build our energy services practice throughout the Rocky Mountains and Northern Great Plains.” The newly acquired firm will remain under the leadership of Gwyn McKee and Kort Clayton and will operate as Thunderbird-Jones & Stokes. The deal marks Jones & Stokes’ sixth acquisition over the past six years.
3. GE COMPLETES ACQUISITION OF ZENON
GE Water & Process Technologies (Trevose, PA) has completed its acquisition of Zenon Environmental Inc. (Oakville, Ont.) for approximately $689 million in cash. Zenon is a developer of hollow-fiber membrane technology for a broad range of water and wastewater treatment applications, including membrane bioreactor (MBR) systems, tertiary water filtration, drinking water treatment, industrial process water and water reuse. “GE’s world-class Global Research Centers, a global sales team with deep domain knowledge, expertise in services, a strong global presence, and expertise in financing projects of varying complexity, and Zenon’s talented people and technologies make it a great strategic match,” said Jeff Garwood, president and CEO of GE Water & Process Technologies.
4. ENGLOBAL ACQUIRES WRC CORP.
The engineering services firm ENGlobal Corp. (Houston, TX) has acquired WRC Corp. (Denver, CO), a privately held provider of integrated land management, environmental, engineering, and related services to the pipeline, power, and transportation industries. ENGlobal purchased WRC in exchange for cash, a promissory note to be paid over four years, 175,000 shares of ENGlobal’s common stock, and the repayment of certain WRC obligations. As part of the transaction, Michael Lee will remain president and chief operating officer of WRC, which generated about $20 million in revenues for the 12 months prior to the signing of the deal.
5. WASTE CONNECTIONS TO ACQUIRE WASTE MANAGEMENT OPERATIONS IN CALIFORNIA
Waste Connections, Inc. (Folsom, CA) announced that it has signed an agreement with Waste Management, Inc. (Houston, TX) whereby Waste Connections will acquire Waste Management’s franchise operations serving El Dorado County in California. The acquisition of the El Dorado operations is expected to add about $20 million in revenues to Waste Connections’ top line. “We are very excited to have entered into an agreement to acquire El Dorado Disposal, as this acquisition further expands our presence in exclusive markets on the West Coast,” noted Ronald Mittelstaedt, Waste Connections’ chairman and CEO.
6. PDG ENVIRONMENTAL GAINS MORE HURRICANE-RELATED WORK
PDG Environmental, Inc. (Pittsburgh, PA) has recently received a series of contracts for environmental remediation and specialty contracting work associated with the efforts to recover from the damage caused by hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma in Mississippi and Florida. The assignments include two contracts, worth an aggregate of $8.5 million, to perform mold remediation, reconstruction and related services at a military complex in Mississippi. PDG Environmental will also perform similar services under an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (ID/IQ) contract signed with a multi-county agency in Florida. The ultimate value to PDG of the Florida ID/IQ contract has not been determined, PDG said, but the funded budget is in excess of $15 million.
7. VEOLIA TO DESIGN, BUILD AND OPERATE UV TREATMENT PLANT IN NEW YORK
Veolia Water North America has signed a $45-million contract with Sewer District No. 1 in Rockland County, New York, to design, build and operate a water treatment plant using state-of-the-art treatment technology. The plant will handle 1.5-million gallons of water per day using advanced technologies such as continuous inflow sequencing batch reactors and ultraviolet (UV) disinfection. The effluent from the plant will exceed all federal and state standards for discharge water, according to a press release announcing the deal. The construction of the facility is expected to take two years, after which Veolia Water will operate the plant for another five years under the current contract.
8. GE TO INVEST $250 MILLION IN INDIA’S INFRASTRUCTURE
General Electric Co. Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Immelt announced that the company plans to invest $250 million in improvements to India’s health-care system and its infrastructure, the latter to consist prominently of clean energy and water projects. Clean-energy projects are likely to include the design and construction of nuclear power plants and integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) facilities for cleaner-burning coal-fired power generation. Water projects will include the design and construction of water treatment facilities for urban areas and industrial complexes, with a particular focus on reuse capability for India’s petrochemical, steel and power industries. “India is a market set to realize its potential,” Immelt recently told the Bombay Chamber of Commerce. “The next ten years are critically important for India in terms of infrastructure and economic development as the country progresses toward becoming one of the largest economies in the world. Success will require depth in areas where GE excels: infrastructure and technology.”
9. FUEL TECH REORGANIZES AS U.S. CORPORATION
Fuel Tech N.V. (Stamford, CT) has filed a Form S-4 Registration Statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to change its legal domicile from the Netherlands Antilles to Delaware. The company, which will operate as Fuel Tech, Inc., said that it made the change for several reasons: to simplify its legal structure; to “allow certain investors, including institutional investors who may not be permitted to invest in foreign corporations, to invest in the company’s common stock”; and to “eliminate what is understood to be uncertainties perceived to accompany an investment in a corporation domiciled in the Netherlands Antilles, a country that does not have an income tax treaty in effect with the United States.” Fuel Tech’s stock will continue to trade on the Nasdaq exchange under the symbol “FTEK.”
10. EBJ BUSINESS ACHIEVER OF THE WEEK: KLEINFELDER INC.
This week EBJ recognizes Kleinfelder Inc. for its receipt of a silver medal for 2005 in the large-firm category (greater than $100 million in annual revenues). During 2005, Kleinfelder continued its pace of 20% average annual revenue growth since 1998, acquiring along the way Massachusetts-based Geologic Services Corp. (GSC), a $45-million environmental engineering firm. The acquisition, Kleinfelder’s largest to date, allowed the company to achieve its goal of becoming a coast-to-coast firm. The deal added 300 employees and nine offices to Kleinfelder. A $185-million company before the merger, Kleinfelder now has more than 2,000 employees working in 65 offices nationwide. Both GSC and Kleinfelder are employee-owned, and both companies were expanding. Honorable mention goes to Kleinfelder as well for innovative technology deployment. When Governor Bill Richardson of New Mexico announced his Water Innovation Fund to support innovative approaches to improving water resource utilization, he chose a proposal by Kleinfelder to be one of his showcase demonstration projects. Kleinfelder’s Albuquerque office brought together the resources needed to win funding for the Veguita Ground Water Denitrification Demonstration Project. This first-of-its-kind project deploys enhanced in situ bioremediation (EISB) technology for denitrification of groundwater at a scale appropriate for small communities. Previously, EISB had been applied only at field test scale.
For more information on the EBJ Business Achievement Awards and the 2005 winners go to: http://www.ebiusa.com/award2005/.
Between October and December 2006, EBJ welcomes readers to submit nominations for the 2006 EBJ Business Achievement awards, which will be announced in early 2007. Nominations must be in the form of 200-word essays and may be submitted on our website, by email or by post.
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