Weapons Complex Monitor Vol. 31 No. 5
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January 31, 2020

AECOM Poised to Close Sale of DOE Contracting Biz

By Wayne Barber

International engineering and construction provider AECOM appears poised to complete the $2.4 billion sale of its government contracting division to a joint venture of two New York investment firms, a company official said Tuesday.

Eric Knox, AECOM vice president for strategic development for nuclear and environment, cited the impending change during a panel discussion at an Institute of Nuclear Materials Management conference in Alexandria, Va. “This is the last time I will introduce a panel as an employee of AECOM. As of next Monday, I’ll be an employee of Amentum. Doesn’t mean I’m changing jobs, it’s just that our company is selling off the division I work in.”

The sale of the Management Services business to an affiliate of American Securities LLC and Lindsay Goldberg LLC could be called off by either side of the transaction if it fails to close by Feb. 12 according to an AECOM financial filing in October with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The parties could extend the deadline until April 12, the filing says. But the deal could close as soon as today, Knox indicated.

Amentum is the Greek word for a leather strap attached to a javelin used in ancient athletics to make it travel farther, straighter, and faster.

Management Services recorded $4.1 billion in revenue during AECOM’s 2019 fiscal year, up from $3.69 billion in fiscal 2018.

The Maryland-based government contracting business has operations in 48 states and 28 countries, and employs over 25,000 people, with more than 10,000 holding a security clearance, according to a buyers’ press release when the deal was announced in October. Management Services President John Vollmer and his existing team will continue to lead the new company.

AECOM is a major contractor to the federal government, including the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy (DOE), and other  agencies. Its management services branch also serves other national governments, such as the United Kingdom’s Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), and the U.K. Ministry of Defense.

While waiting for the deal to close, an AECOM Management Services-led joint venture last month captured a potential 10-month, 10-year remediation contract from the Energy Department for the Central Plateau of the Hanford Site in Washington state. That award has been protested by a Bechtel-led bidding group. The Government Accountability Office should rule on the challenge by the end of April.

The new owners of the Management Services unit will also own a business that is majority partner in DOE cleanup office contracts for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico, the Savannah River Site liquid waste contract in South Carolina, the Oak Ridge cleanup contract in Tennessee, and the Hanford Site tank contract in Washington state.

More details on the impending sale could come Monday, when Los Angeles-based AECOM reports its quarterly earnings.

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