Merger creates new Silverthorne-based waste-and-recycling service
Three waste management companies operating in Summit County have merged with Mountain Waste and Recycling out of Henderson to form one of the largest waste-and-recycling services in Colorado.
With the merger, Timberline Disposal, Talking Trash and Rocky Mountain Cabana, which have operated in Summit and Clear Creek counties for years, are coming together under one banner, Timberline Disposal and Recycling, with its headquarters in Silverthorne.
Details of the merger were not released, but the move is expected to put the newly combined companies in a better position to compete with the Texas-based, waste-and-recycling giant Waste Management, which works in locations across the U.S., including Colorado and Summit County.
“Competition typically serves to contain prices, but the competition needs to be effective,” said Scott Eden, president of Mountain Waste and Recycling, in a prepared statement. “These (merged) companies and their customers will now benefit from increased purchasing powers and operating efficiencies.”
Eden didn’t mention Waste Management by name, but it’s clearly the competition referenced in his company’s news release announcing the merger.
Over the phone, Eden explained that waste collection is only one thing his company does; they’re also focused on recycling, composting and sustainable living.
“Customers will begin to experience an expanded, robust line of services, including construction dumpsters, pick-up of organics, portable restrooms, special event sustainability services and more, all under one company umbrella,” he said.
Mostly, Eden said, the merger will allow the companies to pool their resources and have better access to capital — “money to buy trucks and things like that” — to compete with larger businesses while the services provided will remain much the way they are now.
“We decided that, through strength in numbers, we have to be bigger,” he said of the multi-company agreement.
The merger is expected to eliminate some routes that are considered redundant, but there’s also a promise no employees will be laid off in the deal, as new growth is expected to create additional demands for the existing workforce.
Until further notice, customers of the merged companies should continue setting their recycling and trash bins out on the same days and paying their bills as they always have.
New signage and other branding will be rolled out gradually, according to the release, and Eden said customers will eventually have one phone number and a single website for online payments.
Reached over the phone, Jen Schenk, executive director of the High Country Conservation Center, said on Tuesday that she was aware of the merger but isn’t sure exactly how it might play out.
Still, the director of the county’s most active sustainability group remains optimistic the move will be good for local recycling and composting efforts, especially given Eden’s “strong track record” in the Roaring Fork Valley, with Vail Honeywagon and through Timberline in Summit County.
Both Vail Honeywagon and Timberline are subsidiaries of Mountain Waste and Recycling.
“I don’t know a lot,” Schenk said of the deal. “But Timberline has always provided great service, and I’m also glad we’ll still have the competition with Waste Management.”
Also reached over the phone Tuesday, a spokeswoman with Waste Management wasn’t familiar with the merger, but she was steadfast the larger waste-and-recycling company would continue providing the same services in Colorado despite what its competition is doing.
From the Front Range to the Western Slope, Waste Management has served the state for more than 50 years and has more than 1,200 employees here, according to the company’s website.
Any changes in the landscape will not change Waste Management’s focus, the spokeswoman said.
While the biggest reason for the move is to compete with larger companies, Eden said that doesn’t mean the merger won’t improve local efforts to reduce waste at the landfill.
In fact, he reaffirmed his company’s commitment to sustainable living, something he attributes to “the mountain lifestyle” he came to know working in the Roaring Fork area many years ago.
“We try to make sure we’re good stewards of the environment, and it’s that simple,” Eden said of his philosophy. “If I can divert it from a landfill, I’m going to do it.”
Reached via email, director of the county’s Public Works Department Tom Gosiorowski said the county knows of the merger but does not have any information about how operations at the county-owned landfill may or may not change with it.
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