Clean Harbors (NASDAQ:CLHB) disposes of hazardous waste -- meaning, any form of toxic chemical, organic, or nuclear substance. Clean harbors manages 50 waste management facilities throughout North America in 36 US states, seven Canadian provinces, Mexico, and Puerto Rico. The company also has international operations in Bulgaria, China, Singapore, Sweden, Thailand, and the UK. The company earned $1.07 billion in revenue and $36 million in net income in 2009.
Clean Harbor operates in the highly regulated $2 billion hazardous waste services industry with an array of federal, state, and local government permits that must be obtained in order to enter the sector. As a result, there has not been a new, operating incinerator or landfill created in the U.S. for 10 years, which limits the number of competitors in this industry.
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Clean Harbors top ten customers by revenue have an average relationship of 15 years with the company. Unlike other hazardous waste companies that rely on one or two large contracts for the bulk of their revenue, Clean Harbors has 50,000 customers including a majority of the Fortune 500 companies. No single company accounts for more than 5% of the company's revenue. This ensures more consistent revenue for the company, rather than being reliant on fluctuations in revenue due to a single client or project.
There has not been a new, operating incinerator or landfill created in the U.S. for 10 years. There are both high regulatory costs and an extensive array of federal, state, and local permits required for new facilities. A few of the notable regulations are the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA), the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), the Superfund Act, and the Clean Air act. These regulations are constantly changing and vary state-to-state. For example, Massachusetts considers used oil a hazardous waste, whereas RCRA does not. The Clean Air act has just been revised to include the addition of MACT (Maximum Achievable Control Technology), and Ontario introduced a new prohibition of land disposal of untreated hazardous wastes.
The North American hazardous waste industry is estimated at $2 billion, and the number of companies operating in the segment has been shrinking since the 1990s. At the time, more than 20 companies operated in the hazardous waste disposal sector; however now, four major companies dominate the sector with smaller companies filling niche service requirements. There has not been a new, operating incinerator or landfill created in the U.S. for 10 years.
Clean Harbors, Inc. competes with: