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Majority of the proceeds will be used to pay down Willbros debt

TRC Companies (ticker: TRR), an engineering, environmental consulting and construction management service company, announced yesterday that it has completed its acquisition of the Professional Services business segment of Willbros Group (ticker: WG). The all-cash transaction amounted to $130 million, less a balance of $7.5 million to be paid when certain customer consents are received, according to Willbros.

Willbros said the majority of the all-cash consideration will be used to reduce its term loan to less than $100 million. The remaining funds from the sale, along with $19.2 million from an earlier sale of its Bemis subsidiary, which amounts to approximately $43 million, will be used for working capital and other purposes, the company said. The sale of the Professional Services segment will reduce overhead and indirect costs by about $30 million.

“We are continuing to make solid progress on our plan to return Willbros to profitability,” said Michael J. Fournier, president and incoming CEO. “Our new operating structure, coupled with our much improved balance sheet, will provide opportunity in the markets we serve to produce improved results in 2016.”

TRC expects the transaction to be accretive to fiscal 2016 EBITDA (before one-time transaction and integration expenses) and to fiscal 2017 net income. According to the TRC press release, Willbros Professional Services will become the fourth operating segment in the TRC portfolio and will be called “Pipeline Services.”

The new segment is headquartered in Tulsa, with nine offices nationwide employing 850 employees. The segment’s 2014 gross revenue was approximately $209 million.

History-rich Willbros started in 1915 as Williams Brothers Contractors, at which time the company’s sign read “Rigs, Pipelines, Powers.” In the 100 ensuing years, the company has worked all over the world on energy projects including the War Emergency Pipelines in the U.S. during WWII, the Trans-Arabian Pipeline System in Jordan, Syria and Lebanon in 1951, the Trans-Alaska Pipeline 1974-1976 and the potential 6 MMBO ECHO Terminal in 2010.

WR Willbros Old Timey Photo

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