The Washington, D.C.-area's largest electrical contractor, Truland Systems, suddenly closed its doors Monday, leaving about 1,000 workers without a job. WJLA ABC 7 reported that it found employees heading out for good at the Reston, Va. headquarters this week. The company is ranked #8 on EC&M's 2013 Top 50 Electrical Contractors Listing.
Some employees said they had received an email Sunday night that had left them "shaken and confused." One employee said that the company was liquidating. The company was not commenting to any news outlets at the time.
Then yesterday, Truland Systems and two of its affiliated companies, Truland Service Corp. and Truland Walker Seal Transportation Inc., filed for Chapter 7 in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Alexandria, Va. Truland Group had $371 million in 2012 revenue. Its decision to shut down its operations shocked many in Washington's commercial real estate industry, impacted more than 1,000 employees and dozens of active projects across the region, according to the Washington Business Journal.
Daniel J. Sernovitz reported that Truland had been reorganizing in hopes of selling itself to investors over the past three months. According to Sernovitz, Wednesday's filing was the latest in a series of events since last Friday, when company officials, having missed making payroll, promised that employees would be paid on Monday. Then, on Sunday, a restructuring expert retained to help sort out the company's finances told top officials to tell their employees not to show up for work the next day because the company was going to be shutting down.
Washington Business Journal reported that Truland had fallen behind on debts and was dealing with unpaid projects. "Projects such as a data center development for the federal government in Utah were part of what dragged down the company's finances," according to an anonymous Truland official who spoke to the Journal.
Truland Group Inc. is a third generation, family-owned firm with a history that extends back to 1909.