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May 4, 2018

Old Town engineering firm Sewall Co. sold to private investment firm

Courtesy / Treadwell Franklin Infrastructure Capital LLC Andrew Nelson, left, executive vice president of Treadwell Franklin, is the new chairman and CEO of Sewall, and George N. Campbell Jr., the new president, following Treadwell Franklin Infrastructure Capital's acquisition of the James W. Sewall Co. of Old Town.

Treadwell Franklin Infrastructure Capital LLC announced Thursday it has acquired 100% of James W. Sewall Co. of Old Town.

Sewall is an engineering design, survey, geospatial and forestry and natural resources firm with 57 full-time employees. It has sites in Georgia, South Carolina and Minnesota.

Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

“We are very pleased and excited to complete this transaction with Sewall Co.,” Stephen Rigal Jones, president and CEO of Treadwell Franklin, said in a news release. “We each have benefitted from our working relationship on multiple project efforts and we view this business combination as transformational for both firms.”

Treadwell Franklin is a Delaware limited liability corporation founded in 2015, with headquarters in New York City and Portland. It focuses on investment opportunities in the infrastructure sector. It is privately owned and managed by its partner-members. 

Andrew Nelson, executive vice president of Treadwell Franklin, was named chairman and CEO of Sewall. George N. Campbell Jr., advisory board chairman of Treadwell Franklin, was named president of Sewall on May 1, concurrent with the acquisition.

“Sewall’s long, impressive history as an important Maine company and its skill in engineering, design and geospatial mapping are a perfect complement to the young dynamic energy and acumen of TFIC,” said Campbell, a Brewer native who has experience in real estate, law, public service and higher education.

Sewall name to be retained

Treadwell Franklin said the Sewall name will be retained and it plans to continue serving the company’s current clients, adding that it plans to expand Sewall’s geographic footprint and to co-locate key professionals and new staff at its Portland office.

The two companies have worked together over several years on a variety of infrastructure, energy and environmental projects, with Treadwell Franklin providing commercial and financial structuring capabilities and Sewall delivering technical and specialized engineering/design services.

The buyer intends to leverage the technical resources of Sewall by “tilting toward infrastructure, especially in its development projects in transportation, energy, water/wastewater, social infrastructure, and a special effort around sustainable coastal structures and bridge maintenance” — adding that Sewall’s environmental and geospatial capabilities are especially valuable.

The company plans to spin out Sewall’s forestry practice into a separate subsidiary in order to take advantage of its different business model and to maximize value going forward. Details on that transaction will be announced later, the company said.

Through this acquisition, Treadwell Franklin also gains control of, a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation created for research and development of projects and technologies in environmental and energy sectors.

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