Departments - News Coverage

July 30, 2014

ServiceMaster Announces IPO of Common Stock

— ServiceMaster Global Holdings, parent company of Terminix International, on July 1 announced the closing of its previously announced initial public offering of common stock at $17 a share. The shares began trading June 26 on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol SERV.

The underwriters for the initial public offering have exercised in full their option to purchase from the company an additional 5,385,000 shares of common stock. As a result, the company sold a total of 41,285,000 shares of common stock in the initial public offering.

The company will use the net proceeds of the offering (i) to redeem (a) $210 million of the outstanding principal of the 8 percent senior notes due 2020 issued by its subsidiary, The ServiceMaster Company (“SvM”), at a redemption price equal to 108 percent of the principal amount thereof, plus accrued interest and (b) $262.5 million of the outstanding principal of SvM’s 7 percent senior notes due 2020 at a redemption price equal to 107 percent of the principal amount thereof, plus accrued interest; (ii) to repay borrowings under SvM’s existing term loan facility; and (iii) to pay consulting agreement termination fees.

The offering was made through an underwriting group led by J.P. Morgan Securities, Credit Suisse Securities (USA), Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Morgan Stanley & Co., which acted as joint book-running managers and as representatives of the underwriters for the offering. Additional book-running managers are BofA Merrill Lynch, Jefferies, Natixis Securities Americas and RBC Capital Markets. Robert W. Baird & Co., Piper Jaffray & Co. and Samuel A. Ramirez & Company acted as co-managers for the offering.


Comment Opportunity Extended on EPA’s Complex Water Rule

Washington, D.C. — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency extended the 90-day public comment period for an additional 91 days, until Oct. 20, 2014, for the proposed rule expanding the definition of “waters of the U.S.” under the Clean Water Act (CWA).

This rule would significantly impact how homeowners and professionals treat property near any water by subjecting man-made water bodies, rights-of-way, golf course ponds, ditches and flood plains to CWA regulation. The public comment period originally ended July 21.

RISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment) released a press release in support of the decision to extend the public comment period.

“The proposed rule is complex and includes many broad definitions of important terms defining what a ‘water of the U.S.’ would be under CWA jurisdiction. The extended comment period gives us the time to provide research and science to form meaningful and fully developed comments,” said Aaron Hobbs, RISE president. “The rule would cause many negative consequences for homeowners and professionals and we are making sure we account for all of these concerns.

“Pesticide and fertilizer applications provide many benefits, including protecting our communities from vector-borne diseases, controlling the growth of noxious weeds and invasive species, and controlling harmful pests on public and private property. Under the proposed rule, these important applications could be jeopardized by costly permits,” said Hobbs.


Comings & Goings

If your company has added new personnel, send a photo and press release to jdorsch@giemedia.com.

Jessica Spak has joined the J.T. Eaton Pest Control Division as the Southeastern regional manager for Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and Mississippi. Spak’s industry career has focused on both rodent control products and insecticides both global and domestic.

A.R.E., a truck cap and tonneau cover manufacturer, has realigned its fleet and commercial sales division. The team will now be led by Jose Reyna as national fleet and commercial sales manager; Norm Brown will serve as fleet and commercial sales representative; and Scott West as commercial fleet coordinator. Anna Maher continues as commercial fleet customer service representative.

Charlie Kane joined Pestguard Commercial Services as wood-destroying organisms (WDO) inspector. Kane has experience with termites and various wood-destroying organisms; he will assist in offering free WDO inspections to homeowners and real estate firms in Florida’s Sarasota and Manatee communities.

Shawn Cantor has joined Marathon Data Systems as chief revenue officer. As CRO, Cantor will lead all Marathon’s sales efforts, including ongoing new business sales, go to market planning and execution, as well as strategic initiatives.

Allgood Pest Solutions, Dublin, Ga., made a number of corporate promotions, including:

  • Mike Tindol, former vice president of human resources and training, is now senior vice president of operations. He has been with Allgood for more than 20 years.
  • Max Hale, previously north Georgia region manager, is now vice president of operations. Before joining Allgood, Hale owned Safety First Pest Control, which was acquired by Allgood in 1997.
  • Keith Fleming, former region manager over commercial and northeast operations, is now north region manager for more than six branches, including the Atlanta operations. Fleming joined Allgood in 2007.
  • Randy Piggot, former IT manager, is now project development manager. Piggot will lead the implementation of new initiatives and technology to increase information accessibility and integrated systems management. Piggot has more than 30 years in the industry.
  • Kendra Rudd, formerly HR manager, is now director of HR. Rudd joined Allgood in 2010 and has more than 14 years of experience in the field, specializing in employee relations and retention, employment law and HR strategy.
  • Tom Buchanan, south region manager, has acquired an expanded territory which includes middle and South Georgia and Jacksonville, Fla.

Phillip Carey, who has been with Shamrock Pest Control for five years, has been promoted to service manager of the Houston branch. Lewis Kohler has been promoted to service manager for Shamrock’s main branch in Dallas.

Truly Nolen announced James Hegler as the owner/operator of the company’s first independently owned and operated franchise in Tallahassee, Fla. Hegler brings a decade of experience in the local construction industry.

Central Life Sciences, of Schaumburg, Ill., hired Tony Schultz as brand manager, Farm and Ranch, and promoted Nancy Stratinsky to business manager, Specialty Agriculture.

In his new role, Schultz will manage all brand and new product development initiatives for the Starbar and Pre-Strike product lines across current channels.

Stratinsky will manage all brand and new product initiatives for the Diacon and Centynal product lines, while developing annual brand plans and ensuring successful implementation of tactics and strategies.

Yvan Hernandez joined Massey Communications as account services coordinator, responsible for strategizing and implementing digital communications services for the agency and its clients.


Wegner Receives Tom Evans Award at GCPCA Banquet

— Dr. Gerry Wegner, technical director, Varment Guard Environmental Services, thought he was the featured speaker at the Greater Cleveland Pest Control Association (GCPCA) Annual Awards Banquet and little more. But when his wife, Debbie, walked through the door and sat down to have dinner with his Varment Guard colleagues he thought: “What is she doing here?”

An hour later he got his answer. Wegner, a 30+ year veteran of the pest management industry, was presented the Tom Evans Award, the GCPCA’s highest honor, by Rich Kozlovich, who was sitting in as master of ceremonies for the event since GCPCA President Molly Patton was ill.

In presenting the award to one of the most humble and hard-working men in the pest management industry, Kozlovich said, “Some people have done things year after year after year and we have failed to appreciate it. This year’s recipient, Dr. Gerry Wegner, is that kind of person.”

Not only has the Ohio State University graduate and Copesan Technical Committee member generously shared his expertise with the industry whenever asked, but in his spare time he has created dozens of “bug clocks” featuring mounted insect specimens that he has donated for various fund-raising purposes to Purdue University, Pi Chi Omega, the Ohio Pest Management Association Scholarship Fund, and other worthy organizations.

Not surprisingly, in accepting the award, Wegner deflected the credit for his personal and financial contributions to others, stating “it is your generosity as an industry that has made all of this possible.”

In all, 30 individuals have been recognized with the Tom Evans Award, named after the longtime president of Southern Mill Creek Products, which was acquired by Univar in 2010.

Kozlovich said the annual banquet “truly celebrates the industry” and the Tom Evans Award ceremony recognizes “individuals or groups who have made sacrifices of their time and energy and talent for the good of the pest control industry.”

Scott Steckel, a member of the NPMA Board of Directors, updated attendees on the latest developments at the Washington, D.C.-based association, pointing out that Executive Vice President Bob Rosenberg “has done a great job uniting the association membership” and leading the organization. “If you’ve been disenfranchised (from the association in the past) this is the time to get back in the game,” he urged. “Your vote counts; your input matters. It’s a new day and it’s a bright day.”

Kozlovich agreed: “I’ve beaten on NPMA over the years, but I have been really impressed by the direction they’re going.”

Lonnie Alonso, president, Columbus Pest Control, added it is critical PMPs stay involved in their state and national associations, particularly when it comes to regulatory matters. “Every day we don’t represent ourselves,” he warned, “someone else is going to represent the opposition.”

Alonso also pointed out that working on regulatory issues isn’t for the faint-hearted, requiring tenacity and perseverance. “Nothing is quick and nothing is simple,” he said, pointing to the Ohio Pest Management Association’s (OPMA) longtime effort to secure an emergency exemption from EPA for the use of propoxur to control beg bugs. The OPMA’s most recent request was recently denied in a March 14 letter from James Jones, assistant administrator, U.S. EPA.

“The EPA continues to expedite new pesticide product applications for bed bug control and to support pest management professionals and other members of the public who fight bed bugs on a daily basis,” Jones wrote. “Since initiating this expedited process, the EPA has registered numerous new products for bed bug control that reportedly have very good control in the field. Some of these are combination products … and others have new modes of action. The EPA has made safety findings for all of these newly registered products so that they can be used without posing unreasonable adverse effects to the residents. If the State of Ohio still wishes to pursue a request for an emergency exemption to use propoxur, please submit updated information to address the identified risks of propoxur and the availability and adequacy of alternative methods of controlling bed bugs.”

Alonso said the OPMA has been pursuing this issue, working with OPARR, for more than four years and has no plans to jettison the effort now, saying the association will “continue to take the next steps” with EPA.

One of the most moving moments of the evening occurred when William L. “Bill” Kirchner, whose wife of 58 years recently passed away, spoke to attendees about what the GCPCA has meant to him and his family.

“This is really a tough time for me,” he said, “but when I look out at your faces I see people I love. Pest control is a great industry,” a sentiment echoed by Lonnie Alonso, who reinforced the priceless nature of personal relationships.

When faced with a challenging regulatory or business decision, Alonso said Kirchner was one of the first people he always confided in. “I really learned a lot from Bill and I always valued his friendship and counsel. Over the years, we’ve accomplished a whole lot together (as an association).”

Added Kirchner’s daughter, Barbara, who grew up attending pest control meetings and social events with her parents, “We wanted to thank you for all of your love and support. This organization was a great love of hers.” — Dan Moreland

Date Book

Send your announcement at least 14 weeks in advance to jdorsch@giemedia.com. For additional dates, visit www.pctonline.com/events.

Aug. 12-15: BedBug University Four-Day Boot Camp, Lawrenceville, N.J. Contact: www.bedbugcentral.com or call 877/411-1142.

Aug. 21: BedBug University One-Day Road Show, Tualatin, Ore. Contact: See Aug. 12.

Aug. 23: BedBug University One-Day Road Show, Des Moines, Wash. Contact: See Aug. 12.

Aug. 24-27: Association of Structural Pest Control Regulatory Officials 58th Annual Meeting, Missoula, Mont. Contact: 757/753-8162 or email contact@aspcro.org.

Oct. 8-9: Food Safety and Pest Management conference, hosted by RK Environmental Services and Comprehensive Food Safety, Revel Resort, Atlantic City, N.J. Contact: www.cfsfoodsafety.com or call 800/996-4402.

Oct. 21-24: PestWorld 2014, Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin,
Orlando, Fla. Contact: NPMA, 703/352-6762 or visit www.npmapestworld.org.

Nov. 4-6: University of Kentucky’s Pest Control Short Course (44th annual), Lexington, Ky. Contact: Darlene Thorpe, 859/257-5955 or dthorpe@uky.edu.

Nov. 16-19: 62nd Entomological Society of America’s Annual Meeting, Entomology 2014, Portland, Ore. Contact: www.entsoc.org/entomology2014.

Nov. 18-21: BedBug University Four-Day Boot Camp, Lawrenceville, N.J. Contact: See Aug.12.

Jan. 7-9: NPMA Bed Bug Summit, Sheraton Denver Downtown Hotel, Denver. Contact: See Oct. 21.

Jan. 12-14: 79th Purdue Pest Management Conference, West Lafayette, Ind. Contact: Holly Fletcher-Timmons, 765/494-5856 or htimmons@purdue.edu.

Jan. 14-15: NPMA Eastern Conference 2015, Hyatt Regency Newport, Newport, R.I. Contact: See Oct. 21.

Jan. 19-23: Marathon PestPac User Conference and FPMA Pest and Lawn Care Expo, Embassy Suites, Kissimmee, Fla. Contact: www.events.marathondata.com/userconference.


New Termiticide Launched in Canada

GUELPH, Ontario
— Syngenta Canada announced the registration of Altriset Termiticide for the Canadian PMP market; sales began in April. Although they exist in limited numbers, areas of southern Ontario, greater Toronto and pockets on the west coast do have termites. Toronto’s milder climate, Lake Ontario border and underground infrastructure that remains frost free, produces an ideal habitat for termites.

“Although the market is small, there is a huge need for new chemistry here,” said Robert Percy, director of operations for Gardex Chemicals, Syngenta’s Canadian distribution partner. “We can’t keep using the same active ingredients for 20 years, especially when there are great alternatives being used elsewhere.” Prior to the availability of Altriset, PMPs were limited to permethrin-based products; some commonly used termiticides in the U.S., based on fipronil or imidacloprid, have not been registered.

“Having a non-repellent termiticide that provides superior control, will finally help in colony elimination,” said Richard Murphy, owner of Aetna Pest Control in Toronto. Murphy was a key member of the Termiticide Support Group working toward new active ingredients being registered in Canada. The group was started by the Canada Pest Management Regulatory Agency in 2007, with members from the Canadian Pest Management Association, the National Pest Management Association support staff and interested PMPs.


PCO News

Please send press releases about your firm to jdorsch@giemedia.com.

Legion Pest Management, Murrieta, Calif., owned and operated by U.S. Marine Veteran David Poplin (right) was certified by the Department of Veterans Affairs in January as a veteran-owned business. Poplin has been in the pest industry for more than 20 years and founded Legion Pest Management in June 2013. Legion hired a disabled veteran as its operations manager in August 2013, and has a mission to create opportunities for other veterans as well.

Pestmaster, Reno, Nev., announced its newest franchise owners, Jay and Laura Rodriguez of Miami. This is the fourth franchise in Florida and the first in south Florida. Pestmaster Miami-Dade held its grand opening in April. Pestmaster Franchise Network focuses on pest management with “Environ-Mentality.” That is, the greenest pest management possible, for clients and the environment, the firm says.

Left to right:
Susan Craft, president of the Virginia Society for Human Resource Management; April Honore, customer services department head of A-Active; Justin Roach, quality assurance manager of A-Active; Becky Weil-White, commercial sales manager of A-Active; Keith McCormick, general manager of A-Active; Amelia Kordek, Kevin Kordek’s mother; Kevin Kordek, president of A-Active; Mary Beth Kordek, vice president of A-Active; Walter Kordek, Kevin Kordek’s father; Billy DeLeon, quality assurance manager of A-Active; and Bernie Niedmeir, president and publisher of Virginia Business Magazine.

For the third year in a row, A-Active Termite and Pest Control (above), servicing Hampton Roads Va., and Northeastern North Carolina, was named to Virginia Business Magazine’s Best Places to Work list. The company ranked #22 in the Small Employer category and was honored in February. The award recognizes businesses in Virginia whose leadership and employees have reported on superior competency in core areas such as leadership, training, pay and benefits, and overall engagement.

McGrath Pest Control, Houston, Texas, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. Doug McGrath was a high school teacher who decided he wanted to change careers and start a business through which he could help people in Houston. He bought a 1-gallon hand tank, put it in the back of his Oldsmobile, and started McGrath Pest Control. In 2010, he retired and his son, Scott McGrath, took over as owner. He has added some new ideas and grown the business by about 40 percent in sales each year since. In 2015, Scott said he expects sales to exceed $1 million. The company also has been an Angie’s List super service award winner for seven straight years.

Bug Doctor Termite and Pest Control/Bird Doctor Nationwide was featured as the cover story in the January/February 2014 issue of Business Fleet Magazine. The article, “N.Y. to Nationwide – How to Manage a Growing Fleet,” focuses on how the firm oversees its expanding number of vehicles for its divisions. Bug Doctor is a New Jersey-based $5.3 million company.