Weekly News Bulletin: Dec. 9-15, 2008


Republic and Allied Complete Their $6 Billion Merger

Republic Services and Allied Waste Industries announced the completion of their merger to create a much stronger waste management firm with pro forma annual revenue of about $9 billion and a market capitalization of nearly $8 billion. The combined company has more than 35,000 employees serving more than 13 million customers in 40 states and Puerto Rico. "Today marks an exciting new beginning for Republic Services and the entire environmental services industry," said Jim O'Connor, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Republic Services. "We are looking forward to combining the best practices, complementary assets and experienced executives from two great companies to enhance our leadership position. This is an outstanding opportunity for us to better serve our customers, provide enhanced opportunities to our employees and create shareholder value." The company expects increased efficiencies from the combination to yield $150 million in pre-tax savings by 2011. Under the agreement, Allied shareholders will receive 0.45 shares of Republic stock for each share of Allied stock held. Republic is issuing approximately 196 million shares of common stock to Allied shareholders, representing 52% of the combined company...Read More »



Major Ratings Agencies Downgrade Republic Services Debt after Merger

Ratings agencies Moody's, Standard & Poors and Fitch all downgraded Republic Services Inc.'s senior unsecured debt in anticipation of its merger with Allied Waste, while maintaining its investment grade status. According to Moody's analyst Jonathan Root, "The conclusion with an investment grade rating reflects Moody's belief that the combined company will have a strong foundation to sustain free cash flows at levels that will support de-levering the capital structure, even if faced in 2009 with sustained weak economic conditions." According to Fitch, the adjustment reflects the consolidated entity's credit profile, which is weaker than Republic's pre-merger credit profile but stronger than that of Allied's prior to the merger...Read More »



Casella's Earnings Off Slightly in Fiscal Second Quarter

Casella Waste Systems said that despite increases in operating income and free cash flow, earnings for its second quarter declined to $2.1 million, or $0.08 per share, from $2.8 million, or $0.11 per share, in the same period last year. Earnings were hurt by the closure of one of the company's landfills, economic conditions, and a volatile commodities market for recycled materials. Nevertheless, revenue for the quarter increased nearly 5% to $157.5 million from $150.5 million a year ago as the company continues "to execute well against factors that we can control," according to CEO John Casella. He said the company now estimates 2009 revenues of between $580 and $600 million...Read More »



Work Begins at Republic's Troubled Countywide Landfill in Ohio

Work has begun to create a huge firebreak that is expected to contain underground fires at Republic Services' troubled Countywide landfill in Stark County, Ohio. It is a mandated remedy that is being overseen by both the federal EPA and the Ohio EPA. Republic is funding the $6 million project which involves digging a trench some 700 feet long, 400 feet wide, and 70 feet deep, and removing 400,000 cubic yards of buried trash that is expected to prevent the further spreading of fires at the 258-acre landfill. It creates a barrier between the landfill's original 88 acres, where the fires and odor problems originated, and the landfill's newer Cell 7. The underground fires having been burning there for two years and are thought to be caused by aluminum dross disposed at the older portion of the site long before Republic assumed control of the facility. Temperatures as high as 277 degrees have been recorded in three areas near Cell 7, and one gas-extraction well recently melted when temperatures hit320 degrees...Read More »



Federal Probe of Price Fixing Lands New York Man in Prison

A former principal at two New York waste hauling companies has been sentenced to six months imprisonment for his involvement in a price-fixing scheme. Gary Mueller, of Brewster, N.Y., operated GEM Enterprises and Tri-County Disposal where he admitted to participating in conversations to increase garbage hauling rates to above-market levels in the New York area. The practice, called the "property rights system," in which carters agree not to service or compete for each other's customers, has been the target of an ongoing federal probe of the waste business in western Connecticut and eastern New York. Its ringleader, James Galante is currently is serving a 87-month term of imprisonment for his role. So far, 33 individuals, including Mueller, have pleaded guilty to various federal charges related to the scheme...Read More »



Recycling Rate for PET Containers Hits 24.6% in 2007

The recycling rate for soda bottles and other PET containers rose for the fourth straight year, according to the National Association for PET Container Resources (NAPCOR) and the Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers (APR). The groups said that 1.396 billion pounds of Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) bottles were collected in the US last year representing 24.6% of the volume generated. That represents a 5% increase over the previous year when the rate was 23.5%. The report also details the end-uses for the record 900 million pounds of recycled PET utilized in U.S. manufacturing applications, including fiber for carpet and apparel, strapping, sheet, film, food and non-food containers...Read More »



Veolia ES Wins Expansion for its Greentree Landfill in Pennsylvania

After an exhaustive 21-month-long assessment, the Pennsylvania DEP is allowing Veolia's Greentree Landfill in Elk County, PA to increase its existing disposal space by approximately 104 acres. It increases the overall permit area from 986 acres to 1,148 acres, with a disposal area of about 230 acres, thus adding about 10 years of additional disposal capacity...Read More »



Keep America Beautiful Teams Up With Earth911 to Spread the Word

Keep America Beautiful and Earth911.com have formed a strategic partnership to increase consumer access to recycling programs, and help increase the rate of recycling nationwide. Keep America Beautiful will provide access to the extensive Earth911.com national database of local recycling options through its website, provide educational content on the Earth911.com website, and connect its affiliate network activities and recycling programs to the Earth911.com database. Earth911.com's recycling search engine allows consumers in the United States and Canada to search for over 100,000 locations, programs and events, providing disposal solutions for 170 different products...Read More »


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