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Clean Harbors Signs Definitive Agreement to Acquire Used Motor Oil Collection and Re-Refining Assets from Vertex Energy

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$140 Million Transaction Will Substantially Increase Clean Harbors’ Re-refining Capacity and Strengthen Waste Oil Collection Capabilities

NORWELL, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jun. 29, 2021-- Clean Harbors, Inc. (“Clean Harbors”) (NYSE: CLH), the leading provider of environmental and industrial services throughout North America, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement with Vertex Energy, Inc. (“Vertex”) (NASDAQ: VTNR) to acquire certain assets related to Vertex’s used motor oil collection and re-refinery business in an all-cash transaction for $140 million, subject to working capital and other adjustments. The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021, subject to approval by U.S. regulators and Vertex shareholders, and other customary closing conditions.

Based on current market pricing of Vertex’s re-refining products and production levels of its plants, the assets are expected to generate annual revenues of more than $100 million. Clean Harbors expects the acquired assets to achieve Adjusted EBITDA in the first full year of operations of at least $15 million.

The transaction will enable Clean Harbors to:

  • Expand its re-refining network with a plant in Ohio and another in Louisiana
  • Add annual production capacity of approximately 90 million gallons of waste oil, increasing Clean Harbors’ existing re-refining capacity by approximately 40%
  • Strengthen waste oil collection capabilities, particularly in the Midwest and Gulf Coast regions
  • Complement its existing assets with a strategically located waterfront terminal in the Houston ship channel
  • Add an experienced team of employees and operations across seven states
  • Grow the scale of its Safety-Kleen Sustainability Solutions (SKSS) segment and leverage operating efficiencies
  • Generate cross-selling opportunities with its Environmental Services segment

“We believe that this transaction will generate significant value and return for our shareholders, as well as benefits to our current and prospective SKSS customers,” said Alan S. McKim, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Clean Harbors. “Expanding our re-refining network through the addition of the Vertex assets, which include our first re-refining operation in the Gulf Coast region, will enable us to further grow our presence in the renewable lubricants and fuels markets. Vertex’s waste oil collection and branch footprint complements our existing network of locations and expands our service capabilities within a number of key states.”

The Vertex assets being acquired include a 20-million-gallon re-refinery in Columbus, Ohio and a 69-million-gallon re-refinery in Marrero, Louisiana. The deal involves 17 service branches strategically located throughout the Midwest and Gulf Coast, supported by approximately 200 employees and a fleet of collection vehicles.

Benjamin P. Cowart, President and CEO of Vertex, said, “This transaction positions Vertex to redeploy capital from used motor oil (UMO) and re-refining assets into energy transition assets of scale. Based on Clean Harbors’ 40 years of expertise in environmental services and strong reputation for operational excellence, we feel confident that they are the best partner for this transaction. We anticipate a seamless transition for our respective used oil customers, and we feel confident that our transitioning employees will benefit from being a part of a well-respected environmental company that is capable of offering significant career opportunities.”

McKim concluded, “We look forward to welcoming Vertex Energy employees to the Clean Harbors family later this year. As customers continue to look for ‘greener’ solutions to reduce their impact on the environment, we believe that our closed-loop programs for collecting waste oil and producing finished lubricants or recycled fuels will become even more attractive in the coming quarters and years ahead. The Vertex assets will support the growth strategies related to these sustainable offerings.”

Davis, Malm & D’Agostine is serving as legal counsel to Clean Harbors. For Vertex, Houlihan Lokey is serving as financial advisor and Ruddy Gregory, PLLC is serving as legal counsel. 

About Clean Harbors

Clean Harbors (NYSE: CLH) is North America’s leading provider of environmental and industrial services. The Company serves a diverse customer base, including a majority of Fortune 500 companies. Its customer base spans a number of industries, including chemical, energy and manufacturing, as well as numerous government agencies. These customers rely on Clean Harbors to deliver a broad range of services such as end-to-end hazardous waste management, emergency spill response, industrial cleaning and maintenance, and recycling services. Through its Safety-Kleen subsidiary, Clean Harbors also is North America’s largest re-refiner and recycler of used oil and a leading provider of parts washers and environmental services to commercial, industrial and automotive customers. Founded in 1980 and based in Massachusetts, Clean Harbors operates in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico and India. For more information, visit

Safe Harbor Statement

Any statements contained herein that are not historical facts, including information related to the definitive agreement to acquire certain of Vertex’s used motor oil collection and re-refining assets, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are generally identifiable by use of the words “believes,” “expects,” “intends,” “anticipates,” “plans to,” “seeks,” “should,” “estimates,” “projects,” “may,” “likely,” or similar expressions. Such statements may include, but are not limited to, statements about future financial and operating results, and other statements that are not historical facts. Such statements are based upon the beliefs and expectations of Clean Harbors’ management as of this date only and are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially, including, without limitation, the risks and uncertainties surrounding the proposed Clean Harbors and Vertex transaction, and those items identified as “Risk Factors” in Clean Harbors’ most recently filed Form 10-K and Form 10-Q. Forward-looking statements are neither historical facts nor assurances of future performance. Therefore, readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Clean Harbors undertakes no obligation to revise or publicly release the results of any revision to these forward-looking statements other than through its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which may be viewed in the “Investors” section of Clean Harbors’ website at

Michael L. Battles
EVP and Chief Financial Officer
Clean Harbors, Inc.

Jim Buckley
SVP Investor Relations
Clean Harbors, Inc.

Source: Clean Harbors, Inc.

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