Hot Mix

Graco acquires Smith Manufacturing

Jake Bernath (left) and his father, David Bernath (right) appear with Bob Wallace, SealMaster field representative, as they receive an award for the performance of their Indianapolis-based franchise. They are the new owners of SealMaster/Louisville, which serves all of Kentucky.
Jake Bernath (left) and his father, David Bernath (right) appear with Bob Wallace, SealMaster field representative, as they receive an award for the performance of their Indianapolis-based franchise. They are the new owners of SealMaster/Louisville, which serves all of Kentucky.

Graco Acquires Smith Manufacturing

Graco Inc. Minneapolis, MN, announced it has acquired Smith Manufacturing, Pompano Beach, FL. Smith, which makes and sells scarifying equipment for surface preparation, will continue to operate out of their existing facility, manufacturing both Smith and Graco scarifying products.

“Smith is a well-known brand for surface preparation and grinding equipment used in striping, road construction, road maintenance and concrete flooring/surfaces,” said Dale Johnson, president of Graco’s Worldwide Contractor Equipment Division. “Their broad line of products will be a great addition to our pavement maintenance equipment offering and an excellent complement to our robust family of line striping equipment.”

In an email to its customers Steven Smith, president of Smith Mfg., said the company was excited about the acquisition.

“The new business combination will be highly beneficial to our customers, suppliers, employees and our company,” Smith said. “There will be no significant changes in the structure of the Smith organization or your pricing.”


Brahney, Miller Join Pavement Advisory Board

Two new contractor members have joined the Pavement Advisory Board this year. Lee Miller, president and CEO of Pacific Sweeping, San Marcos, CA, and Steven Brahney, CEO of Brahney Paving, Hillsborough, NJ.

They succeed Alan Rose, former owner of Rose Paving, who has been a board member since 1997, and Tom Kuhns, Capitol Sweeping Services, South Windsor, CT, a board member since 2009.

Brahney started striping parking lots for a family friend when he was 12 years old, making him a veteran of more than 30 years in the paving and pavement maintenance industry. He continued striping until he graduated from college when he became a full-service pavement maintenance contractor. In 2005, encouraged by many of his customers who liked his firm’s work, he added asphalt and concrete paving.

“Our customers pretty much wanted us to be able to do everything so we felt we had to get into paving,” he says. “Adding those two services not only solidified my relationship with my customers but also spurred our growth.”

Today the 15-person Brahney Paving, with two office locations and two equipment storage yards, provides asphalt paving (40%), concrete paving (35%) and pavement maintenance services (25%) to commercial, industrial and multi-family properties in New Jersey, eastern Pennsylvania, Delaware and northern Maryland. 

Brahney Paving operates under the umbrella of a master holding company, Slurry Pavement Solutions. Also operating under the umbrella are offshoots of Brahney Paving including 877-FixAsphalt, of Delmarva Peninsula and of the Jersey Shore – all of which provide asphalt and concrete paving and pavement maintenance services.

Lee Miller is a member of the North American Power Sweeping Association, and Pacific Sweeping is the San Diego area’s exclusive 1-800-SWEEPER member. Miller who has a degree in public administration and a certificate in entrepreneurial studies, put the former to use over a 15-year period when he was overseeing public works departments for three California cities.

During that time he was involved in street sweeping, asphalt maintenance and pavement marking among other services, and he was responsible for writing the specifications for in-house street sweeping and for outsourcing other work.

 In 2006 Miller began putting his entrepreneurial studies degree to work, joining 47-year-old Cannon Pacific Services, which changed its name in 2013 to Pacific Sweeping to better convey the work the company actually does.

 Pacific Sweeping employs 50 people, operates 35 sweeping trucks and serves more than 500 public and private customers throughout Southern California. Miller says 80% of the company’s revenue is derived from sweeping for municipalities and 20% from site maintenance including parking lot sweeping, power washing, weed abatement and other general site services.

 “I’m honored to be part of the Pavement Advisory Board,” Miller says. “I look forward to learning as much as I can during my term while sharing Pacific Sweeping’s message of protecting and enhancing the environment in everything we do at the company, including providing a hassle-free service guaranteed to delight you, or you don’t pay for it.”



SealMaster under New Ownership in Kentucky

SealMaster, Sandusky, OH, has announced David Bernath and his son, Jake Bernath, are the new owners of the franchise system’s Louisville-based Kentucky territory. This is a second franchise for the Bernaths, who have owned the Indianapolis-based Indiana territory since 2007. Previous owner J.R. Blasius sold his interests, which also include a distribution center and retail store in Lexington, upon his retirement.

 “We’re in the process of introducing ourselves as the new owners in Kentucky,” says Jake Bernath. His sister, Mary Jane Bernath, relocated to Kentucky several months ago to manage the office and to help ensure a smooth transition. She previously worked at the Indiana franchise.

“David and Jake received our Franchise of the Year Award two years ago,” said Rick Simon, SealMaster’s director of franchise operations. “They bring ingenuity to work every day with them, creating efficiencies that benefit their customers and their business.”

In other SealMaster news, the company announced the opening of a store in Plainfield, IL, the fifth store in the state.

“Now, from the near North Side, you can get to any of our stores within 30 minutes,” says Kevin Shields, who owns the business with Mike and Jonathan Bashir. “Contractors can pick up anything they need,” Shields adds. “It’s a true one-stop source.”

 The new store is located at 23841 West Aero Court in Plainfield.