HOUSTON (April 20, 2015) – Thorpe Specialty Services Corporation (“Thorpe”) (www.thorpepme.com) announced today the acquisitions of Canada-based Chem-Star and Oklahoma-based Energy Specialty Contracting, Inc. (“ESCI”) (www.energyspecialty.com).

Headquartered in Houston, Thorpe is a multi-craft industrial service provider and manufacturer, specializing in refractory, linings, insulation and non-metallic corrosion piping systems, flanges and vessels.

The expansion comes on the heels of the company’s first international acquisition, British Columbia, Canada-based Clayburn Refractories Ltd., in May 2014.

Chem-Star, based in Prince George, British Columbia, expands Thorpe’s corrosion service and product offerings into Western Canada to include pressurized tanks, RFP, abrasive blasting and paint coatings plus vessel lining systems. Currently, Chem-Star primarily serves the pulp and paper and chemical industries in both British Columbia and Alberta provinces. Chem-Star will operate within Clayburn Refractories Ltd., which has been rebranded as Clayburn Services (www.clayburnservices.com) to better reflect the company’s expanded service offering.

“Since we acquired Clayburn last year, we have been actively seeking opportunities to better serve our customer base in western Canada,” said Tom Burns, CEO of Thorpe Specialty Services Corporation. “With Chem-Star’s product and service offerings, we will be a more comprehensive partner for our customers.”

“In addition, we were able to retain their entire staff, which was very important to both Dom and Cosmo Zavaglia, Chem-Star’s founding owners, and to us. Clearly, our future success is based on the talented people which built Chem-Star into being a market leader,” Burns added.

The addition of Energy Specialty Contracting, Inc. (ESCI) located in Broken Arrow, Okla., adds scaffolding and expands Thorpe’s insulation service capabilities.

“When the opportunity to add ESCI to the Thorpe family came up, we knew it was the right fit, culturally and operationally,” said Burns. “ESCI has a strong presence in the Midwest, servicing multiple industries, especially in the petrochemical space, which is similar to our branches along the Gulf Coast. Thus, this investment adds both scaffolding to Thorpe’s overall market mix while expanding our footprint.”

Burns continued, “In addition, it was very important to us that ESCI founder Bill Chambers will continue to lead this new Thorpe branch, ensuring there will be no change in the high quality of services our customers expect.”

”We, at ESCI, are excited to be a part of the Thorpe family of companies. The Thorpe name is well-known and respected in the petrochemical industry, so joining with them strengthens our ability to service our clients and customers,” said Bill Chambers, founding owner of ESCI and current vice president regional manager at Thorpe.

Thorpe will retain all staff at both locations.

Thorpe’s advisors were, Montreal, Canada based Stikeman Elliott LLP for legal and Vancouver, BC based Grant Thornton LLP for financial. In addition, Thorpe’s advisors were Wilkie-Farr & Gallagher LLP for legal and BDO for financial on ESCI.

Thorpe Specialty Services, is a portfolio company of the CapStreet Group (“CapStreet”) (www.capstreet.com), a private equity firm founded in 1990 that invests in owner-managed, lower middle market companies headquartered in Texas and surrounding states, with a particular emphasis on companies headquartered in the greater Houston area. CapStreet targets companies operating in the industrial distribution, industrial manufacturing and business service sectors and partners with management to accelerate growth and improve profitability.


Courtenay Siegfried, 20K Group
(713) 224-1877, ext. 301