Oil and Gas

Bernhard group buys ATC Associates

by Leslie Turk

Jim Bernhard

A group led by Jim Bernhard’s private equity firm, Bernhard Capital Partners, confirmed Nov. 13 that it has purchased Lafayette-based ATC Associates Inc. from Cardno Limited for an undisclosed sum. Brisbane, Australia-based global contractor Cardo, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX: CDD), bought ATC in 2012 for $106 million and had renamed it Cardno ATC.

Established in 1982, ATC Associates provides environmental consulting, industrial hygiene, geotechnical engineering, government services and construction-materials testing and inspection. It has 1,350 employees and more than 70 locations throughout the U.S.

Bobby Toups

ATC Associates Inc. will maintain 70 offices around the country, according to a press release. CEO Bobby Toups and the remainder of the legacy ATC Associates Inc. management team will continue to lead the company. No staff changes are expected.

The acquisition returns ATC Associates Inc. to its origins as a privately held U.S company.

“This is a bit of a homecoming for us,” Toups says in the announcement. “We’re excited to be part of the Bernhard Capital team and look forward to capitalizing on their support and experience for the work we do within the environmental services market. This partnership will help cultivate a more entrepreneurial atmosphere for our employees and position us for steady growth.”

Bernhard Capital Partners is a private equity firm established by Jim Bernhard and other former members of the Shaw Group, a Baton Rouge-based engineering and construction company that sold to CB&I for $3 billion in 2013. BCP's focus is energy companies.