The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced March 31 that Republic Services Inc., Phoenix, would be required to divest waste collection and disposal assets in five states in order to proceed with its acquisition of Santek Waste Services LLC, Cleveland, Tennessee. According to the DOJ, without the divestiture, the proposed acquisition would substantially lessen competition for small-container commercial waste collection and municipal solid waste disposal services in six local markets across the southeastern United States.
The sale, which has been in the works for nearly a year and slowed by pending DOJ approval, may be moving to its conclusion, according to the News-Herald. On April 13, Santek VP of Corporate Business Development Ben Johnston told Tennessee’s Loudon County Solid Waste Disposal Commission that a May closure date was tentatively in the offing.
“The DOJ has signed off on a few documents that were filed on (March) 31,” Johnston told the commission, according to the News-Herald. “They signed off on those documents back in—it was (April 9). I found out about it (April 12), which allowed for a tentative closure date to be established for May 3. Now, all of the documents that were filed, including the divestures, etc., are all outlined on the Department of Justice website. All of that information is available to anybody who would like to go look at it. Tentatively, there is a closure date of May.”
Under an asset preservation stipulation and order filed April 9, New York City-based private-equity firm Kinderhook Industries—with its portfolio companies of Columbia, South Carolina-based Capital Waste Services and Birmingham, Alabama-based EcoSouth—would be the proposed acquirer of Santek’s Rhea County Landfill in Dayton, Tennessee; the Murray County Landfill and Transfer Station in Chatsworth, Georgia; and the Chattanooga Transfer Station in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The proposed divestiture would also include Kinderhook acquiring additional collection facilities and routes in the Southeast.
Additionally, under the proposed divestiture, Waste Connections, Ontario, would acquire certain Texas collection routes from Santek, as well as assets and property associated with the routes.