Lakeshore Recycling makes northern Illinois acquisition
Logos courtesy of Lakeshore Recycling Systems.

Lakeshore Recycling makes northern Illinois acquisition

Suburban Chicago recycling firm adds holdings of Roy Strom Co. to its portfolio.

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January 5, 2021

Morton Grove, Illinois-based Lakeshore Recycling Systems (LRS) has announced what it calls its largest acquisition to date, that of Maywood, Illinois-based Roy Strom Co.

LRS calls Roy Strom “among the most respected independent waste haulers in the Chicagoland market.” The addition of Roy Strom to the LRS portfolio “positions LRS for accelerated growth throughout Chicagoland and the broader Midwest,” adds the firm, which also refers to itself as the nation’s seventh-largest privately held waste and recycling company.

According to LRS, it is gaining “an extensive, long-tenured residential and commercial customer base, well-positioned single-stream and C&D [construction and demolition] recycling operations and a strategically located transfer facility in Maywood that serves many local operators.”

“As the fourth generation of Strom leadership, I am excited to carry on my family’s values of hard work, putting the customer first, and fierce independence; at LRS those values will be preserved for generations to come,” says George Strom, president of Roy Strom Co.

LRS says George Strom will continue with LRS as an area vice president, leading operations at the LRS Roy Strom facilities in Maywood.

LRS CEO Alan T. Handley says, “For more than 75 years, Roy Strom Co. has built a rich legacy as one of the most respected independent waste and recycling leaders in Chicago. This critical partnership demonstrates how trusted LRS remains as a first-choice acquirer for independent, family-owned waste and recycling companies throughout the Midwest.”

Handley adds, “LRS has been built by entrepreneurs with many of the acquired businesses’ family members continuing to serve as key executives throughout the organization. Maintaining our entrenched local roots with an unyielding commitment to the customer experience differentiates LRS and fuels our growth and innovation. LRS remains the local alternative to large national waste haulers who lack the community connection so essential to successful waste and recycling service delivery.”

Chicago-based Much Shelist served as legal advisor and KPMG LLP provided financial and tax advisory services to LRS. Additionally, in conjunction with the acquisition, Comerica Bank’s Environmental Services Department led the senior financing and Ironwood Capital provided mezzanine financing, says LRS.

In conjunction with the acquisition, Ironwood Capital announced a subordinated debt investment in LRS.

“We’re very excited about partnering with Alan and his team to support the company’s acquisition of Roy Strom Company, one of the most respected independent waste haulers in the Chicagoland market,” Dickson Suit, managing director of Ironwood Capital, says. “LRS has established itself as a dominant independent waste management company serving Chicagoland and surrounding regions, and differentiates itself from competitors because it is built by entrepreneurs, with deep roots in its commitment to customers.”

“This is a transformative acquisition for LRS,” Handley says. “Roy Strom’s extensive residential and commercial business, single-stream and C&D recycling operations, and its transfer facility in Maywood, Illinois, overlay perfectly onto LRS’s operations and assets.”

Handley added, “This acquisition positions LRS for strong growth ahead, and we’re excited to partner with Ironwood to finance this acquisition and to foster future growth. Ironwood’s experience in the environmental services industry makes it an ideal partner to support our growth objectives.”

Ironwood says with this deal, it has now made more than a dozen platform investments in the waste management vertical.