Industry Happenings

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December 27, 2021

Scarlett Nolen

Scarlett Nolen

As we wrap up 2021, we have much to reflect on. Beyond the pest control industry, we have all navigated vaccination, supply chain challenges, and the Great Resignation causing employment shortages across nearly all industries. Within our industry, some of the largest acquisitions we have seen have rounded out the year. In case you missed it, the buzz is Rollins acquired seven Hulett Environmental locations and Rentokil Initial acquired Terminix with a $6.7 billion evaluation. The industry is dividing into two fragments: large, often publicly traded companies, and small, family-owned companies. Each party has its benefits.

Many pest management professionals (PMPs) are asking what this means for their own careers. For those that are a part of the acquisition, they might be considering how their immediate employment might change. For those in the industry, this could create a great opportunity. As Rentokil expands as a seemingly monopolizing conglomerate, this can open opportunities for the “little guys.”

While large companies often have extensive resources, brand recognition, and financial flexibility, small companies have perhaps undervalued advantages as well. Small companies have the advantages of being nimble and adaptive faster. Most notably, small companies embrace technology. I like to think of Truly Nolen as a “small-big” company. We have the resources, trainers, facilities and department specialists that provide robust support and stability. Concurrently, we also have a small-business, family feel, with open doors at all levels in the company.

I am often asked whether Truly Nolen will join the acquisition club. My quick answer: I will buy, not sell. While I intend to continue to welcome companies that complement my business, like our recent acquisition of Eliminex in Phoenix, Ariz., selling is not on the menu for Truly Nolen. I think selling makes sense for specific fiscal goals or if someone is ready to hang their hat up and does not have a legacy plan. As a third-generation PMP, I am committed to continue being a family-owned company.

I enthusiastically greet a new year for all PMPs. It is the perfect time to gain perspective for all the possibilities to come in 2022. I wish all my colleagues a healthy and successful year.

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About the Author

Scarlett Nolen was promoted to president of Truly Nolen of America in March 2019. Nolen has worked for the company since 2012 in multiple roles. Most recently, Nolen was the district manager for the “Growth District,” a district of new service offices throughout Florida, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California. Prior to joining the company, Nolen graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor’s Degree in Experimental Psychology and Summa Cum Laude from the University of Central Florida with a Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy.

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