GFL Environmental acquires Pink-Trash in North Carolina
- GFL Environmental, through subsidiary Waste Industries, has acquired Coastal Ladies Carting Inc. — known as Pink-Trash — effective March 1. The deal was first reported by the Greater Wilmington Business Journal. Financial terms were not disclosed.
- Pink-Trash could not be reached for comment but told the Journal it has 76 employees. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration records indicate the company has 37 vehicles. Waste Industries confirmed to Waste Dive that the acquisition came with collection assets, including multiple municipal contracts, and no other infrastructure.
- "Pink is a market leader in the coastal North Carolina market. It's an acquisition that enhances our market position, but at the same time we can tuck this into existing operations which creates values and efficiencies for us," Ben Habets, area vice president for Waste Industries, told Waste Dive.
Launched in 2011, Wilmington-based Pink-Trash made a name for itself with distinctive pink trucks and carts, and by donating 1% of invoices to cancer treatment organizations. As told to Waste Dive in 2018, President Kelly Buffalino started the business as a way to offer more affordable rates after feeling unsatisfied with service options in the area. The donation idea came from her experience as a breast cancer survivor.
In the years since, the company has grown to include business in four counties. According to its website, Pink-Trash serviced an estimated 19,000 residents and 2,200 commercial accounts, along with a roll-off business for C&D.
The company has reportedly donated at least $250,000 to local charities so far. It is unclear if that practice will continue: Habets pointed to the company's existing Full Circle Project, in which customers can donate to various charities, as a sign of its philanthropic commitment. Given that Pink-Trash customers can now participate in Full Circle, he expected they would guide more funding to cancer treatment groups.
"We'll probably be looking to partner with many of the same organizations they did based on that customer feedback," said Habets.
Aside from reporting common challenges with recycling markets due to China's scrap import policies last year, Pink-Trash had offered little public indication of any financial struggles. Given that it was viewed as a local competitor to Waste Industries, which now has more financial backing from GFL Environmental, the tuck-in deal is viewed as a logical fit.
Formerly a dominant East Coast player in its own right, Waste Industries was formally acquired by Canadian GFL Environmental for $2.825 billion in Nov. 2018.
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