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Waste Industries Purchases Pink-Trash

By Christina Haley O'Neal, posted Mar 4, 2019
Kelly Buffalino, owner and president of Pink-Trash, said Monday that Waste Industries bought the company, and more details are expected to be shared in coming days. (File photo)
Pink-Trash, a locally owned trash and recycling pickup service, has been purchased by Waste Industries, Pink-Trash officials said Monday.

The deal took effect March 1.

“It’s a highly transitional period. It all just happened,” Kelly Buffalino, owner and president of Pink-Trash, said Monday, adding that additional details about the company changeover could be released in the coming days.

Waste Industries has started informing some customers about the purchase. Raleigh-based Waste Industries is a waste collection service that already has a presence in the Wilmington area and services both residential and commercial customers.

The financial details of Waste Industires' purchase of Pink-Trash were not disclosed, Shawn Haines, general manager for Waste Industries in Wilmington, said Monday.

"We’re just trying to grow our business," Haines said. "It’s really going to be business as usual."

Waste Industries is honoring Pink-Trash rates for residential and commercial customers for both trash and recycling services, Haines said.

"We have no intentions of changing out the carts … At this time, if they have a pink cart, they are going to keep their pink cart," Haines added.

Pink-Trash was launched in 2011. The company, known for its pink trash cans, had a business model that donated 1 percent of its residential and commercial customers' bills to go toward cancer treatment.

“Going Beyond the Pink is extremely grateful for the impact Pink Trash has made in our local breast cancer community," said Kara Kenan, co-founder of the local nonprofit Going Beyond the Pink. "Their support of our programs and financial assistance has truly changed lives and given hope to the many local women and men struggling financially after a cancer diagnosis. Our hope is that Waste [Industries] will continue to support this community in a similar way, helping us to continue having a positive impact on those diagnosed with breast cancer in our community.”

Haines declined to answer questions Monday about whether Waste Industries will keep the Pink-Trash business model or its mission to support breast cancer patients.

Pink-Trash had 76 employees as of the transition and all were "welcomed by" Waste Industries if they chose to be, Buffalino said.

Buffalino declined to answer further questions about the deal with Waste Industries and whether the company would carry on the Pink-Trash mission to support breast cancer patients. She also declined to disclose the size of its customer base.

"Due to the newness of this transaction we feel that we need to wait until the transition time frame has passed," Buffalino said in an email.

Joe Suleyman, director of New Hanover County Environmental Management, said Monday that Pink-Trash was a sizable customer of the county landfill.

“I believe they are No. 3, behind Waste Industries and the city of Wilmington as far as the tonnage of solid waste brought into New Hanover County Landfill,” Suleyman said.

The company was also No. 3 in terms of its recycling there, he added.

New Hanover County had a contract with Pink-Trash to provide trash and recycling services for county buildings, he said.

“This is all fairly new news to us, as well. So we are just waiting to see what further announcements they have to make over the coming days,” Suleyman added.
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