Industry roundup: BrightView prepares to go public

Updated Jun 13, 2018

Brightview LogoThe largest landscaping company in the country has set the ball rolling to become a publicly traded company after filing for an initial public offering (IPO) with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission last month.

This filing was amended yesterday to note the recent development of BrightView entering into a joinder agreement and Amendment No. 4 to its first lien senior secured credit facility, establishing $35 million of new incremental revolving commitments.

The company has filed for an IPO of $100 million but Renaissance Capital predicts that this is likely a placeholder and could rise to $500 million. The firm plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol BV. No pricing terms were disclosed.

The Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania-based business was formed in 2014 after Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. LP (KKR) acquired green industry giants Brickman Group and ValleyCrest Companies to combine them. The new name and logo were launched in 2015 with the B and V representing the two former companies.

Renaissance Capital says that the landscaping company has booked $2.4 billion in sales for the 12 months ended March 31, 2018. It boasts of having over 200 branches and has acquired other landscaping companies as recently as May with Environmental Earthscapes in Tucson, Arizona.

BrightView cites its No. 1 position in the industry, along with being a single source solution for landscaping problems with consistent service on a local level as some of its competitive strengths. The IPO filing states that KKR will continue to own a majority and BrightView will be a controlled company within the standards of the NYSE.

While the IPO will allow BrightView to raise the largest amount of capital, it will now have to balance between pleasing its shareholders and its customers. This switch from private to public could pave the way for similarly large commercial landscaping companies to follow suit and serve as a possible exit strategy for certain owners.

Kubota Tractor acquires land for Kubota Ranch

Kubota Tractor Corporation has purchased almost 318 acres of land in Ponder, Texas, roughly 30 miles northwest of its headquarters in Grapevine, Texas.

The property will be known as Kubota Ranch and serve as a field space for testing, training, operating and demonstrating Kubota equipment. Dealers will be able to preview new Kubota products and Kubota employees will be able to assess equipment to improve functionality.

The four small utility buildings on the property will be retained as the company has a plan to make Kubota Ranch a dealer destination and testing ground to unveil new equipment.

“Kubota has considered a land purchase of this nature for quite some time, and with our Grapevine headquarters in such close proximity, the opportunity to expand our operations and research and development capabilities here in the greater Dallas-Fort Worth region makes solid business sense,” said Masato Yoshiawa, Kubota Tractor Corporation president and CEO. “With this land we will now be able to expand our physical footprint and build out our vision for the ranch to evaluate and test out equipment.”

“Best of all, we can bring our dealers to Dallas to unveil and operate our new products, versus creating the experience for them in various cities around the country – it’s exciting that we can now offer this experience here at home in our own backyard.”

John Deere recognizes five dealers for outstanding sales achievement

Five John Deere dealers were honored for outstanding sales of commercial ZTrak and QuikTrak mowers in 2017.

Ag-Pro, Everglades Equipment Group, James River Equipment, SunSouth LLC and TriGreen Equipment LLC were given awards to commemorate the moment.

“We are proud to celebrate these dealers, as this achievement directly relates to the level of dedication they demonstrate for their customers,” said James Dutton, product marketing manager of commercial mowing equipment for John Deere. “At John Deere, we are proud of our dealers who constantly go above and beyond to provide professional landscape contractors with the support and service needed to keep their businesses running.”

Ag-Pro has been in business for more than 60 years and serves customers from South Carolina to Texas. Everglades Equipment Group has been recognized for the second year in a row and provides for Deere customers in central and south Florida.

James River Equipment has 30 locations in Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. SunSouth credits its sales team for its success in Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi.

TriGreen Equipment meets the needs of its commercial customers in Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi.

LandOpt network expands in Pennsylvania

Hydroscapes has become the fourth landscaping company to join LandOpt’s contractor network.

Rob Kratz, Hydroscapes owner, says he chose to partner with LandOpt because he felt he had reached a ceiling with his business.

“I needed a model and plan that works,” he said.

He hopes to double his revenue and increase energy within five years. Kratz is also excited to relinquish some of his current responsibilities as the LandOpt System aids him in defining job roles and creating clear career paths.

LandOpt has been growing steadily over the past six months, adding three locations this year. The company says this is a sign that both contractors and customers are embracing a business-focused and professional approach to the landscaping industry.

Massey Services promotes employee to east Florida regional manager

Preston Koch has been promoted to east Florida regional manager. He will be responsible for sales, service, training and community relations for nine service centers in Volusia County.

Koch has been with Massey since 2011 as a general manager in training and was quickly promoted to general manager five months later. He was general manager of the Avalon Park Service Center as well as the GreenUP Oviedo Service Center. He managed all segments of the residential business and both service centers saw growth under his leadership.

“In his seven years at Massey Services, Preston has been an outstanding contributor and leader for our residential business,” said Tony Massey, president of Massey Services. “He has excelled in managing both out pest and lawn businesses and his dedication to total customer satisfaction has resulted in extremely high customer retention rates and double-digit growth in his service centers. We look forward to his future contributions in this new role.”

Koch has a bachelor’s degree in business and human resource management from Western Governors University.

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