SIC 4959 Sanitary Services, Not Elsewhere Classified


SIC 4959

This category includes establishments primarily engaged in cleanup and maintenance activities that are not classified in other sanitary industries. Activities covered by this industry classification include beach maintenance and cleaning, malaria control, mosquito eradication, oil spill cleanup, snowplowing, street sweeping, and vacuuming airport runways.



Other Airport Operations


Remediation Services


Exterminating and Pest Control Services


All Other Miscellaneous Waste Management

The 2001 industry leader was Stericycle Inc. of Lake Forest, Illinois. Stericycle boasted $667 million in revenue and 2,600 employees. In second place was Waste Connections Inc. of Folsom, California, with $378 million in revenue and 2,400 employees. Oakleaf Waste Management LLC of East Hartford, Connecticut, was third with $200 million in revenue and 200 employees. Other notable companies in this industry were Roy F. Weston Inc. of West Chester, Pennsylvania, with $147 million in revenue and 1,800 employees, and Maxymillian Technologies Inc. of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, with $31 million in revenue and 200 employees.

Most establishments in the industry are small, local companies that operate on a contract basis, typically for business and municipal clients. For instance, many firms that offer commercial snowplowing, street cleaning, and runway clearing services are small, family-operated businesses. These companies typically act as subcontractors and bid on service contracts for property managers, government agencies, or institutions. The labor and capital intensive nature of sanitation services, combined with the competitive bidding process, results in characteristically low profit margins for industry participants. Furthermore, low barriers to entry create an extremely competitive pricing environment.

An example of an entrepreneurial company in this industry is the Greater Philadelphia Commercial Residential Services Co. (CORS). Started in 1996 as a graffiti-removal company, CORS could not turn a profit because business owners were unwilling to pay for services they believed should be paid for by local government or the graffiti wrongdoers. Since CORS' company assets already included vehicles with mounted pressure washers, the company broadened its market by offering industrial cleaning and environmental services. In 1999, services included pressurized surface cleaning, street cleaning, and interiors cleaning. Corporate revenues went from...

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