ST. LOUIS, Dec. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Company executives announced today that global consulting services firm Lerch Bates Inc. has entered into a definitive agreement with leading inspection company American Testing and Inspection Services (ATIS). Under the agreement, Lerch Bates will divest the Elevator Inspection Portfolio of Lerch Bates Inspection Services (LBIS) its unit dedicated to government-mandated elevator inspections, in a merger with ATIS. The merged Inspection enterprise will operate under the ATIS name, and the transaction is expected to close by year end.
By spinning off the LBIS Inspection Portfolio to long-time partner ATIS, Lerch Bates will focus resources on expanding its core business lines of in-depth, integrity-driven consulting on elevator modernization, service audits, and ground-up design projects.
Through the acquisition, ATIS will expand its position as the largest U.S.-owned company of its kind, offering nearly 100 Qualified Elevator Inspectors (QEIs) licensed in more than 30 states, covering over 50,000 elevators and escalators.
"This is great news for our customers and employees," said ATIS President and CEO Chip Smith. "Our customers will continue to enjoy a superior level of service, and have access to our enhanced, nationwide network of best-in-class inspectors. Customers and employees alike will benefit from expanded investments in support resources resulting from our added scale."
"Our agreement with ATIS allows Lerch Bates to further dedicate ourselves to the deep consulting partnerships we value with our clients, while ensuring that they continue to receive seamless service across every level of their needs," said Lerch Bates Chief Executive Officer Bart Stephan.
Lerch Bates and ATIS have a long history of collaboration and will maintain a strategic relationship. Lerch Bates will exclusively enlist ATIS for its clients' code-required elevator inspection needs, while ATIS will offer expanded opportunities for its customers to take advantage of Lerch Bates' unrivaled consulting services.
Furthermore, with the merger agreement, Lerch Bates will hold a minority ownership stake in ATIS, while Cequel III, a St. Louis based investment and management firm led by Jerry Kent, will continue as ATIS' majority owner. All other Lerch Bates divisions will continue to be fully owned and operated by Lerch Bates, including the inspection operations of Joseph Neto & Associates in New York City. Financial terms of the merger agreement were not disclosed.
Founded in 2013, American Testing and Inspection Services (atis.com) is the largest U.S.-owned elevator inspection company, providing third-party safety inspection and test witnessing services for elevators, escalators, moving walks, and other conveyances. Based in St. Louis, Missouri, ATIS has licensed inspectors in over 30 states serving more than 20,000 customers and over 50,000 elevators and escalators.
About Lerch Bates
Founded in 1947, Lerch Bates (lerchbates.com) is an employee-owned global consulting services company, putting an elite team of engineers, designers, architects, project managers, consultants and logistics experts to work for partner clients in the building construction and management industry. Based in Denver, Colorado, with 35 offices around the world, Lerch Bates advises architects, developers, building investors, owners and managers in the design, sustainability and continuous use of building systems.