Columbus company Burkhalter Rigging, located on Highway 45 South, is being sold to Memphis-based company Barnhart Crane and Rigging, Barnhart announced Wednesday. Photo by: Dispatch file photo
June 5, 2019 10:44:30 AM
The contents of this article have been modified since its original posting.
Barnhart Crane and Rigging Company of Memphis, Tennessee, announced Wednesday the company has purchased the majority of Columbus company Burkhalter Rigging.
Burkhalter, 2193 Hwy. 45 S., opened in Lowndes County in 1973 and specializes in moving heavy equipment for petrochemical, power, civil and marine industries worldwide. It has facilities in both Columbus and Rosharon, Texas.
Barnhart is a family-owned business with more than 50 locations nationwide and employs approximately 1,300 people. The company focuses on crane rental, rigging services, outage planning, specialized solutions for component replacement, industrial storage and national project cargo logistics.
Barnhart Director of Marketing Chris Teague said the Columbus and Rosharon facilities will now be Barnhart facilities. He added the company has approximately 40 employees in Columbus who will largely remain in their same positions, including Brooke Burkhalter as the Columbus branch manager. Teague said operations will likely not change on the ground level, but the facility will now have the backing of Barnhart's experience and manpower.
"In short, the Burkhalter brand will no longer be active," he said.
The sale was finalized Friday, Teague said.
"Burkhalter represents an excellent fit for Barnhart, and this acquisition further enhances Barnhart's market position as the lifting and logistics provider of choice," Brooke Burkhalter said in a press release Wednesday. "Burkhalter has a good reputation for engineering custom solutions that mirrors our own approach. Burkhalter customers will benefit from access to Barnhart's nationwide network of locations, our engineering department with more than 60 engineers, and our own fleet of barges for transport on inland waterways."
Neither Brooke Burkhalter nor Burkhalter's owner, Delynn Burkhalter, responded to calls from The Dispatch by press time.
The announcement of Barnhart's purchase comes months after Burkhalter declared for multi-million dollar bankruptcy in a Texas federal court. Dallas, Texas-based attorney Marcus Helt filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy on the company's behalf on Jan. 31.
The Dispatch previously reported the company has between 200 and 999 creditors. The company owed unsecured claims in more than $4.3 million for just the top 20 unsecured creditors.
Teague said he couldn't speak to what role the bankruptcy played in the sale.
Burkhalter was a third-generation family business that worked on projects all over the country for nearly 50 years, from rigging projects on bridges in Galveston and Fort Worth -- as well as removing spans of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge in record time -- to moving superloads of more than one million pounds. In 2017, the company won multiple safety awards, including the Zero Accidents Award, given by the Specialized Carriers and Rigging Association to companies with no recordable accidents the years before.
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