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SIMMCO Files Chapter 11

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Privately-held Southern Industrial Mechanical Maintenance Company, LLC (SIMMCO) filed for Chapter 11 protection with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Western District of Tennessee, case number 18-10261. The Company is based in Brownsville, TN and headed by David R. Blurton as President and C.E.O.  SIMMCO is represented in bankruptcy proceedings by Glenn B. Rose of Bass, Berry & Sims PLC.

According to documents filed with the Court, SIMMCO is a mechanical contractor and pipe fabricator. The Company has been in business since 1977 and currently employs approximately 75 individuals.

Prior to 2014, SIMMCO was a successful enterprise, with revenues of approximately $35 million in some years. In 2014, SIMMCO entered into a subcontract related to the construction of a steel mill in Shreveport, LA. The project did not go well, and SIMMCO advanced large sums of money to complete its work on the project even though the general contractor refused to pay SIMMCO.

SIMMCO timely filed a lien for its work on the disputed Louisiana project and initiated litigation to collect the amounts owed to it, and subsequently sued for $27 million including overhead and profit. SIMMCO and the general contractor ultimately agreed to resolve the dispute through binding arbitration and in December 2017, the arbitration panel awarded SIMMCO only $4.5 million. SIMMCO believes that most of this award will have to be paid to a company who funded the litigation and asserts a lien on the award.

SIMMCO had expected to use the award from the arbitration to pay down the debt owed to IberiaBank, its largest lender, as well as amounts owed to the IRS. After the arbitration award was entered, IberiaBank demanded payment in full of all amounts owed and initiated an action in federal district court seeking appointment of a receiver.

As a result of the Louisiana project problems and costs advanced in connection with that project, SIMMCO was unable to pay other debts timely in 2015 and 2016, including some of its withholding obligations to the IRS. The IRS ultimately put a lien for the amounts owed, which hampered SIMMCO’s ability to get work on new projects, and SIMMCO’s revenues dropped significantly. SIMMCO’s business has now stabilized, and prospects for new business are good.

The Company notes, “SIMMCO filed this voluntary bankruptcy case with a goal of reorganizing its financial obligations and returning its business to pre-2014 levels of success.”

 

SIMMCO cites estimated assets and liabilities of $10 to $50 million.

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