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Milestone: Celebrating 75 years, AMECO builds its own future

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74 years, equipment, construction and maintenance service company Ameco A team player, he has worked on a variety of jobs around the world, from mining operations in the third world to war zones and oil refineries.

However, now that it has celebrated its 75th anniversary, the company has achieved independence.

Founded in 1947 as an in-house equipment and tool supplier to Greenville’s iconic Daniel Construction Co., the company was known as American Equipment Co. until the 2010s, during which time Daniel’s successor, Fluor Corp. has grown into a billion-dollar segment of . , which he later renamed AMECO.

But gradually the company came into its own.

Gary Bernardez, CEO of the construction site services provider that New York-based One Equity Partners acquired from Fluor for $73 million in May, said: 2021 years.

Aside from working for another company for the next six years after 2014, Bernardez spent half of his nearly 30 years at Fluor running AMECO.

“But what I was passionate about was what the AMECO organization could do on its own,” says Bernardes.

Likewise, he appreciates the opportunities that come from AMECO/Fluor’s “great history of doing pretty amazing things in difficult places.” He recalls, for example, mobilizing with US forces in Operation Desert Storm in 1991.

“There were some unbelievable stories: a phone call from a general and a bomb detonating on the premises,” he says. “And every day you woke up and worked hard to keep people safe.”

He once managed about 5,000 employees in the Fluor world, but now oversees about a tenth of that number, many of whom are AMECO’s focused independent companies. I am living my second life.

“It’s the first culture we created,” he says. “People fell in love with the organization. All we had to do was give it a purpose and a reason for people to stay involved. I am proud of.”

Still, he says, the company has inherited some of Fluor’s DNA. “They’re part of who we are and who we’re trying to move forward, but we can also leave behind things that don’t make sense to us.”

For one thing, according to Bernardez.

AMECO is also now able to absorb other companies. On May 5, nearly a year after the OEP acquisition, AMECO merged with F&M MAFCO. An international supplier of tool and equipment rentals, he operates his seven branches in the United States and his three branches in Canada, along with sales and service programs.

“We have a very similar heritage,” says Tim Fries, president and chief growth officer of the Cincinnati-based company, now in its 77th year. I happen to be from Ohio.)

“Whether you walk into their building or ours, it makes no difference. The cultures are very similar,” says Fries. “I’ve been through a few acquisitions and it’s creepy how smoothly this one went.”

As Fries puts it, AMECO is now poised to take all the accumulated synergies to “a whole other level.”

Commenting on AMECO’s new energy, Bernardez said:


1947: The Daniel Equipment Division was founded in Greenville in a garage off Main Street as the equipment and tools division of Daniel Construction Co.

1971: American Equipment Co. was formed to expand the business and support clients other than Daniel Construction.

1977: Fluor Corp. acquired the company as part of the acquisition of Daniel Construction.

1987: American Equipment Co. expands into Puerto Rico. This is the company’s first expansion outside the continental United States.

1995: Expanding globally, including Mexico, Argentina, Chile, and the Philippines.

1999: Rebrand as AMECO and operate under a new name and logo.

2013: A new state-of-the-art headquarters will be built on the same site that has been home to AMECO since 1969.

2021: One Equity Partners acquires US and Canadian operations to form AMECO as an independent company. Gary Bernardez returns as Chief Executive Officer and AMECO renews its mission as a site services company.

2022: AMECO will merge with Ohio-based F&M MAFCO, which just celebrated its 77th anniversary, and AMECO will celebrate its 75th anniversary in Greenville.

sauce: Ameco