ABCO (www.abcodelivers.com) is a 90-year old family-owned supplier of industrial, medical, and specialty gases along with welding, safety, and industrial supplies. With 12 retail locations in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire, it is recognized as the leading independent industrial gas distributor in its region. The Company has over 10,000 active customer accounts, leases approximately 100,000 gas cylinders, and owns over 100 bulk installations. The Company’s differentiation is its unusually high level of customer service through experienced and knowledgeable employees, advanced engineering, consulting services, and the ability to provide same or next-day delivery and service.
Airgas (www.airgas.com) and its subsidiaries is the largest U.S. distributor of industrial, medical, and specialty gases, and hardgoods, such as welding equipment and supplies. More than 14,000 employees work in approximately 1,100 locations, including branches, retail stores, gas fill plants, specialty gas labs, production facilities, and distribution centers. Airgas also distributes its products and services through eBusiness, catalog, and telesales channels. Its national scale and strong local presence offer a competitive edge to its diversified customer base.
RAPID's Founder (and majority shareholder) was evaluating his ownership and role with the Company; with his sights set on other entrepreneurial and eco-conscious interests. RAPID had recently experienced significant revenue growth and required future investment to maintain its competitive position. With Bigelow's coaching, the Founder prompted certain members of senior management, removing himself from the day-to-day operations and making possible a transition away from the Company upon a transaction. It was essential to find an investor who would support the management team and the future growth opportunities they wanted to pursue.
“ABCO and its employees have worked hard for the past 90 years to steadily grow this business and earn the respect of customers. Founded and owned by the McCourt family since 1921, ABCO employs more than 100 people. Essentially we were a large ‘family’, working as a team to provide the needed solutions for our customers. I’m very proud of everyone at ABCO and what we’ve accomplished. Our values of focusing on and serving the customer and our culture match those of Airgas. We are looking forward to continuing and expanded success as we join forces with the nation’s industry leader in packaged gases.” Mike Ross, former President ABCO
“I am quite certain my late father and brother would be pleased, as I am, knowing that the ABCO legacy will continue with Airgas. BCO and Airgas are quite similar in that both take the time to understand customers’ needs and are passionate in providing simple to complex solutions.” David McCourt, former owner ABCO