DALLAS, Tex. – Stonehearth Ventures, Inc. completed its acquisition of Forney-based Universal Cleaning Specialists last week with assistance from Sigma Mergers & Acquisitions.
UCS is a carpet cleaning and restoration operation that specializes in servicing the apartment industry all across North Texas. Its primary function is to provide carpet cleaning as part of a property’s make-ready process done in the time between one tenant vacates and a new tenant takes over a unit. This creates significant time-sensitivities for the clients, which leads to scheduling challenges for the companies servicing them. These unique circumstances, coupled with the complexities of cleaning apartments, truly make UCS a niche service-provider.
UCS founder Joe Davis has worked in the carpet cleaning industry for decades, starting and selling companies in various parts of Texas. Some might call him a “serial entrepreneur,” as he has always had a knack for building companies from the ground-up – but then it’s not long before he’s eying the next opportunity to do it all over again.
“I get a lot of satisfaction from starting and building a company,” Davis said, “but once it’s up-and-running successfully and turning a profit, I start to lose a little interest. I opened UCS 10 years ago, grew it throughout the recession and just finally got to a point where I was ready to hand it off to someone looking for a solid, cash-flowing business so I could move on to my next new venture.”
Stonehearth Ventures president Craig Winchell turned out to be just the person Davis was looking for – someone who could appreciate where the company was currently positioned and understood all of the opportunities the business would offer if the right person took it over.
“The most important thing for me in regards to a business acquisition was potential,” said Winchell. “There were obviously a lot of other factors used to make the decision, but ultimately I wanted to take over a successful business that I felt had significant room for top and bottom line growth – whether it be through managing the P&L more efficiently, streamlining operations or investing growth capital to expand the business’ reach. I saw a lot of these opportunities with UCS. Joe built a great company primed for someone with my perspective to step in and move the company forward.”
As good a fit as this transaction looked to be for both parties, it was not without some challenges along the way – namely in negotiating the finer points of the agreement between the attorneys. That’s where Sigma president Scot Cockroft and senior business advisor Jeremy Furtick offered the most assistance.
“Attorneys are just looking out for their clients’ best interests, but many times that can be counter-productive to getting to a resolution if not handled properly,” Winchell said. “Sigma was really instrumental in ‘translating’ across the table what it was that both Joe and I were trying to accomplish through our attorneys, which helped us understand better what the true issues were and ultimately get a logical deal done.”
“There’s no question Craig and I and our attorneys could not have hammered this deal out without Scot and Jeremy’s help,” Davis added.
Sigma Mergers & Acquisitions’ (www.sigmamergers.com) roots as a Dallas business brokerage and M&A firm date back to 1984. After the company was acquired in 2004, Sigma has grown into one of the country’s most successful firms of its kind. The proprietary Sigma DealMap™ process has changed the way businesses are sold in Texas and has established Sigma as one of the most productive business brokerage and M&A firms in the country year after year. Sigma has closed more than 500 business transactions since 2004, and on average those businesses have sold for 95% of their asking prices.