Chain Electric Co. sold to Texas investor

HATTIESBURG — One of Mississippi’s oldest family owned companies has taken on an investor from outside the state.

Bobby L. Chain, chairman of Chain Electric Co., tells the Hattiesburg American his family will remain at the helm of the 57-year-old company based in Hattiesburg.

Chain says as a result of the mid-June “recapitalization,” the controlling stake in the business now belongs to Cotton Creek Capital of Dallas.

Details were not released.

The recapitalization, or restructuring of the business’s capital, left the Dallas-based private equity firm holding more capital than the Chains.

“We don’t own control in it,” Chain said. “My two sons and I own a substantial amount, but less than control … before we took this investor, we owned 100 percent of it. It’s an effort on our part to make the company larger and have a bigger footprint throughout the United States.”

Chain Electric provides power line installation and maintenance in distribution and transmission grids in the Gulf Coast and Midwest regions.

Chain said he’s handed off the CEO title to his son, Bob, who was already Chain Electric’s president. The elder Chain will remain the company’s chairman. John Chain will continue in his role as senior vice president and chief operating officer.

“People are not changing, equipment’s not changing, locations are not changing,” the elder Chain said. “It’s just the growth of a company.”

Chain Electric currently employs about 600 people in 15 states. Chain said he hopes the business grows quickly with the aid of the outside investments.

“We have some reason to believe we’ll be at 1,000 employees in a little over two years,” he said.

Cotton Creek Managing Director Antonio J. DiGesualdo said in a news release that the company anticipates “a substantial investment in specialized equipment and skilled workforce to further establish Chain Electric in the power line services market.”

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