Agbede now vice chair of new entity
Robert Agbede says any budding minority-owned company should strive to build its business to the point where its skills, services and expertise are in such demand that a larger firm seeks to buy them to enhance its capabilities.
That’s what he has done, with a slight detour. After founding his Advanced Technology Systems environmental engineering firm in 1987, he built it to the point where he acquired another firm, Chester Engineers in 2003.
But he is not finished.
On March 31, Agbede announced that Chester Engineers has merged with Canadian-based Hatch, a global leader in mining, energy and infrastructure engineering, creating Hatch Chester. The new entity will be based in Hatch’s offices on West Carson Street on the West End and serve as the company’s U.S. headquarters. Agbede is the new firm’s vice chair.“I’ve been here 42 years. I got my first contract at ATS from U.S. Steel,” Agbede said. “We grew, merged with Chester, and today, we are growing beyond our region with a company involved in aviation, transportation, smart cities and steel mills, doing business in 150 countries.
“I am proud to announce this merger as we transition from a small minority firm, to Chester, to a global company that can do more for our region and beyond,” he said. “It allows us to touch, in a deeper way, all that we have always been involved in. It shows that, given access to opportunity, the sky’s the limit.”
He then introduced Ted Lyon, who will serve as Hatch Chester’s Chair, and who, despite being in the Middle East the week before, and in China in February, has strong Pittsburgh links. He and his sons all attended Pitt, and his uncle, Fred Way, was a noted riverboat captain who lived in Sewickley. Lyon’s cousin is opera singer and WQED announcer and music programmer Anna Singer.