Dan McGlade founded Energy Transportation Inc. in 1985 with one truck. Next week, he will auction off almost 2,300 cranes, trucks and other types of rigging equipment.
The auction represents the culmination of McGlade’s 30-year career in business and signals a new chapter in the life of the Casper company. Energy Transportation was bought in February by NCSG Crane & Heavy Haul Corp. of Edmonton, Alberta.
Energy Transportation’s 135 employees, most of whom work in Wyoming, will stay on with the new company. But all the equipment will go.
That includes six crawler cranes, each weighing between 230 tons and 660 tons and costing about $7 million new; 14 rough terrain cranes, weighing between 20 tons and 150 tons and costing about $1.5 million new; seven all terrain cranes, seven hydraulic truck cranes, along with all the related rigging equipment, heavy-duty trucks, and trailers, to name just some of the items.
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The sale, which is being handled by Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, has drawn interest from around the world. Prospective buyers are expected to descend on Casper from as far afield as Asia and Europe.
Ritchie Bros. conducts 350 auctions around the world every year, but “this is the best selection of cranes we’ve ever sold,” said Rob Giroux, a vice president at the auction company. “Energy Transportation is one of the most prestigious crane operations in North America, with one of the best fleets around.”
In the early years, Energy Transportation focused on specialized trucking, McGlade said. Over time, it expanded into heavy hauling and eventually rigging.
The company has survived three downturns in the oil and gas industry since its founding. The recent slowdown did not prompt the company’s sale, McGlade said.
“I just decided to make a change,” he said. “I’m at a point in my life where I want to reap some of the benefits of being in business for 30 years.”
He is staying on with NCSG to help manage the transition. Business, he noted, remains as brisk as ever.
The auction is one of the components of Energy Transportation’s sale, McGlade said.
Energy Transportation was the 42nd largest crane company in the U.S. and 87th in the world prior to its sale.
The auction is open to the public. There are no minimum or reserved bids. Everything will be sold, McGlade said.
Today, the company’s assortment of cranes dominate the skyline west of Casper. Atop one of them, flutters a 30-foot-by-50-foot American flag.
McGlade can think of no better tribute to the country that helped make his company a success.
“The only reason (the flag) is not 50-by-80 is we couldnâ€™t find one,” he said.
Reach energy reporter Benjamin Storrow at 307-335-5344 or [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @bstorrow