Commercial & Industrial Services Practice Overview


Harris Williams is pleased to present our Commercial & Industrial Services Industry Update for August 2020. This report provides commentary and analysis on current capital market trends and merger and acquisition dynamics within the global commercial & industrial services industry.

We hope you find this edition helpful and encourage you to contact us directly if you would like to discuss our perspective on current industry trends and M&A opportunities or our relevant industry experience.

Our Practice

Harris Williams’ Business Services Group has experience advising companies that provide a range of commercial, industrial and professional services. 

This particular report focuses on trends and metrics in the following areas:

  • Environmental & Waste
  • Events & Entertainment
  • Facility Services
  • Field & Route Based Services
  • Fire & Life Safety
  • Food Services
  • Janitorial
  • Landscaping
  • Mechanical Services
  • Property Management
  • Property Restoration
  • Security
  • Service Aggregators
  • Technician Services
  • Testing, Inspection, Certification & Compliance

Representative Transactions


What We’re Doing

Waste360 Waste Expo 2020

Harris Williams' Business Services team will virtually attend the annual Waste360 Waste Expo, Sept. 14-17. In attendance will be a wide variety of leading waste management and other commercial and industrial service providers exhibiting their unique products and solutions. The event serves as an opportunity for Harris Williams to see firsthand how businesses are evolving to tackle the ever-changing demands of the waste management industry.

Read more here.

What We’re Reading

10 Changes We’ll See to Physical Retail Spaces in a Post-COVID World

Forbes  8/10/2020

As we look forward to the post-COVID-19 world, retailers will rely heavily on mechanical service providers to ensure the safety of their customers.

“Some of the biggest changes to physical spaces may not be as obvious to customers but will happen with improved filtration and HVAC systems. Visible filtration systems offer a transparent look at a store’s approach to cleanliness, and updated HVAC systems can increase humidity and potentially lessen the spread of germs.”

Read the full article here.

COVID is Forcing Real-Estate Developers to Rethink Buildings

The Wall Street Journal  8/10/2020

The pandemic has forced developers to rethink residential and commercial building designs as they try to determine which parts of the pandemic lifestyle will remain as part of our culture moving forward.

“HVAC upgrades alone will add several million dollars to the [San Francisco based 47-story multiuse building] project. The investment is expected to differentiate the project from older buildings and help with marketability.”

Read the full article here.

Commercial Cleaning Services Industry Outlook: COVID and the New Normal

Camino Financial  7/21/2020

Commercial cleaning has never been in the spotlight that it is today; janitors/cleaners are being appreciated in a new light and will no longer work unnoticed in the background.

“The coronavirus has pushed commercial cleaning and janitorial services into the public eye. Jane Hopkins, executive vice president of Service Employees International Union’s Northwest chapter, says, ‘In a hospital, they’re just as important as a doctor — they’re just doing a completely different job.’”

Read the full article here.

How Some Janitors Are Asked to Keep You Virus-Free

The New York Times  7/17/2020

The old job of custodians was tidying up; the new one is protecting against a killer through disinfection. Despite this, many janitors warn that they have not been given enough resources to fight the virus, and in some cases, even hot water to wash their hands.

“Workers in office buildings and supermarkets say they lack the time and training to do the job right. And though airlines have tried to win back customers by raising sanitation standards, pilots, flight attendants and cabin cleaners report that the efforts are still inadequate, with reused rags, unwiped tray tables and bathrooms that aren’t disinfected between flights.”

Read the full article here.

Public Markets1

Historical Stock Prices – Last 5 Years


Historical Median TEV/LTM EBITDA Multiples – Last 5 Years


Notes: Sub-sector indices weighted by stock price.



1. S&P Capital IQ, As of 8.16.2020

Economic Trends




Note: A PMI Index figure greater than 50 indicates expansion.

2. U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis

3. The Conference Board

4. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

5. U.S. Department of Labor

6. US Census

7. Institute for Supply Management

M&A Market Trends1

Commercial & Industrial Services M&A Volume by Year


Representative Commercial & Industrial Services M&A Transactions


1. S&P Global Capital IQ

2. U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis

3. The Conference Board

4. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

5. U.S. Department of Labor

6. US Census

7. Institute for Supply Management


Public Comparable Companies:

Facility & Field Services: ABM Industries, Aramark, Cintas Corporation, Compass Group, ISS, Mitie Group, Sodexo, EMCOR Group, UniFirst Corporation, Rentokil Initial, ServiceMaster Global, Stericycle

Environmental Services: Clean Harbors, US Ecology, Heritage-Crystal Clean, Veolia Environment, Ecolab, Suez

Property Management: Jones Lang LaSalle, CBRE Group, FirstService

Safety & Security: G4S, Prosegur, Securitas

Waste Management: Advanced Disposal Services, Casella Waste Systems, Republic Services, Waste Connections, Waste Management

Testing, Inspection & Certification: ALS Limited, Bureau Veritas, Eurofins Scientific, Intertek Group, SGS