Contractor to continue Grand Junction operations under new ownership

Matt Mulherin, left, president of Newport News Shipbuilding, and Nick Lombardo, president of S.M. Stoller Corp., discuss the acquisition of Stoller by Huntington Ingalls Industries, parent company of Newport News Shipbuilding. Mulherin and Lombardo said the acquisition will broaden the scope of business for both companies, but not affect Stoller in its role as prime contractor for Department of Energy operations in Grand Junction. (Business Times photo by Phil Castle)

Matt Mulherin, left, president of Newport News Shipbuilding, and Nick Lombardo, president of S.M. Stoller Corp., discuss the acquisition of Stoller by Huntington Ingalls Industries, parent company of Newport News Shipbuilding. Mulherin and Lombardo said the acquisition will broaden the scope of business for both companies, but not affect Stoller in its role as prime contractor for Department of Energy operations in Grand Junction. (Business Times photo by Phil Castle)

Phil Castle, The Business Times

A company that for more than a decade has provided services to the Department of Energy in Grand Junction plans to continue in that role under new ownership.

S.M. Stoller Corp. will operate under the same name and staffing levels, but as a subsidiary of Huntington Ingalls Industries.

While the acquisition isn’t expected to immediately affect Stoller operations in Grand Junction, the transaction promises to ultimately broaden the scope of business both for a company that provides envionmental and technical support services and a company that builds ships.

Nick Lombardo, president of Stoller, said the acquisition brings additional resources to the company that will “really make us a player.”

Matt Mulherin, corporate vice president of Huntington Ingalls Industries and president of its Newport News Shipbuilding division, said he’s looking forward to the combined efforts. “Now the fun part comes. Now let’s see what we can do with this marriage.”

Lombardo and Mulherin were among the executives who came to Grand Junction to discuss the acquisition with employees and the media.

For more than a century, Huntington Ingalls Industries and its divisions have built and serviced ships for the Navy and Coast Guard.

The company is the sole contractor building nuclear-powered aircraft carriers for the Navy and one of only two contractors building nuclear-powered submarines.

The company employs a total of more than 37,000 people in four states, including 23,000 employees at its shipyards in Newport News, Va. The publically owned company is traded on the New York Stock Exchange and reports  annual revenues of about $6.6 billion.

For more than 50 years, Stoller has provided environmental, nuclear and technical consulting and engineering services to government and private clients. The company employs 680 people and performs work in 29 states.

Since 2002, Stoller has provided technical, management and administrative serves as prime contractor for Department of Energy operations in Grand Junction. The company employs 148 people and works with a total of 14 more employees from other companies in Grand Junction.

Under the acquisition, the value of which was not disclosed, Stoller becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Huntington Ingalls Industries and operates under the Newport News Shipbuilding division.

Peter Diakun, vice president of energy programs for Newport News Shipbuilding, said the acquisition of Stoller and its managers and staff positions the company for increased business beyond Navy contracting in environmental management and remediation.

Diakun said the combined operation offers expertise not only in building and refueling nuclear facilities, but also closing down and cleaning up nuclear facilities. “We see right away a real hand-in-glove fit.”

Mulherin said the companies also constitute a good match in terms of corporate cultures that emphasize safety and performance.

While no charges are planned at Department of Energy operations, Lombardo said Stoller could try to grow operations in Western Colorado through other means, potentially by providing additional services to energy exploration and production companies.

Phil Castle is editor of the Grand Valley Business Times, a twice-monthly business journal published in Grand Junction. Castle brings to his duties nearly 30 years of experience in editorial management positions with Western Colorado newspapers. In addition, his free-lance work has appeared in a variety of publications, including the Washington Post. He holds a bachelor's degree in technical journalism from Colorado State University.
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Posted by on Jan 14 2014. Filed under Business News, Featured. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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