Scrap entrepreneurs may sell out to a bigger outfit, or formally retire, but the urge to start-up a new yard rarely fades

Jul 01, 2010 | 04:56 AM | Michael Marley

Sometimes, so the saying goes, our success contains the seeds of our destruction. At other times, a phoenix is born out of the ashes. Both have proven to be the case in the scrap industry.

The success of entrepreneurs who built their companies—or companies founded by their fathers or grandfathers—attracts the attention of larger companies, and they see control being wrested away from them. The question is what to do next.

Some receive a financial offer too good to refuse. For others, the offer comes at a time when they are ready to bail out the business is strong, there are no heirs to take over the reins and they are lured by year-round warm weather in Florida.

Some are only too happy to pack it in and leave. Others stay on for a while and work as an employee where once they were an owner. Some chafe under the rules of the corporate world, and within a year or two they are no longer employed by the company started by their impoverished immigrant grandfathers and built into a powerful business.....

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