The winner of the Large Turnaround of the Year is Compressor Engineering Corporation (CECO or the "Company"). Headquartered in Houston, Tex., CECO is a family-owned business founded in 1964 that CECO operates in two divisions, Manufacturing and Pipeline Services. With the turnaround team consisting of Chicago-based AEG Partners, existing management/ownership and outside counsel Hoover Slovacek, the company survived the liquidity crisis, avoided bankruptcy, improved profitability and refinanced all senior debt at par. The bank has realized a full recovery and the company will continue to be a family-owned operation.
Swisher Hygiene ("Swisher"), which performs a wide variety of essential hygiene and sanitation services to about 60,000 customers coast-to-coast, was named winner of Large Transaction of the Year. Industry roll-up legends Wayne Huizenga and Steve Berrard listed Swisher on the Nasdaq in 2010, and purchased more than 54 businesses in 2011, after which it began to show losses. Faced with a liquidity crisis, the new chief operating officer approached Global Turnarounds to help release cash from excess inventories. The result was a cash positive quarter for the end of Q2 of 2015, which enabled Swisher to be sold to Ecolab. The Swisher brand name and the majority of its people continue to operate as an autonomous unit for the new owners.
This year's Small Transaction of the Year Award went to Lee Steel Corporation and Affiliates ("Lee Steel"), a 60-year-old top-tier steel service center that provides a full range of flat rolled steel. The company had historically been a steadily growing, profitable company. However, a confluence of external factors caused the company to experience significant liquidity constraints, ultimately leading to the company's Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.
The company retained Huron Consulting Group, Inc. and, working with its restructuring and turnaround practice, the investment banking team reviewed various strategic alternatives for the sale of the company's assets. In September 2015, Lee Steel successfully completed the sale of its assets to Union Partners I, LLC, as well as Hilco Industrial LLC and Hilco Real Estate LLC.
The Harry Preucil Pro Bono of the Year Award went to association members Pro Bono committee co-chair Rebecca Fruchtman of Bank of America Merrill Lynch; David A. Bernal of Growth Decisions, Inc.; Paul Melville of Grant Thornton, LLP for their work with Guillermo Leyva and Vilma Machin of the Alma Dance School.
The University Relations Committee received the Outstanding Committee of the Year Award, recognizing members Rob Baynes, The Strong Oak Group, Inc.; Candice Kline, Sidley Austin LLP and Thomas S. O'Donoghue, Jr, CTP, FGMK LL.
Individual awards included Barbara L. Yong, Golan Christie Taglia LLP for Outstanding Service; Ray Anderson, Huron Consulting, CTP of the Year; Alex Boerema, AlixPartners, Emerging Leader and Chris Horvay, Sugar Felsenthal Grais & Hammer LLP, Legend Award.
About TMA Chicago/Midwest:
The Chicago/Midwest Chapter of The Turnaround Management Association is one of the largest chapters of the only international nonprofit association dedicated to corporate renewal and turnaround management. Incorporated in 1991, the award-winning Chicago/Midwest Chapter celebrated its 25th year of serving its community. Its active membership participates in more than 30 events annually, including educational workshops, networking programs, forums, and conferences. For more information about the organization and membership, visit http://www.tmachicagomidwest.org.
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SOURCE TMA Chicago/Midwest