Benjamin Cowart, our CEO and Chairman, began working in the industry as a 16-year-old employee of his brother’s used oil collection business in Alabama. After 15 years of helping his brother build a successful business, Mr. Cowart struck out on his own by moving to Houston, TX, and forming Vertex in 2001. Vertex has experienced a number of defining events over its history as outlined below:
2001: Ben Cowart relocated to Houston and launches Vertex Energy as a used motor oil (“UMO”) supplier to third parties in the Gulf Coast.
2004: Vertex launches Refining & Marketing Division to capitalize on the company’s competency in sourcing and managing distressed hydrocarbon streams.
2008: Company develops its patented Thermal Chemical Extraction Process (“TCEP”) as its first move into the re-refining of UMO.
2009: Vertex Energy takes another step forward by becoming a publicly traded company through our merger with World Waste Technologies, Inc.
2012: Vertex agrees to acquire the assets and liabilities of Vertex Holdings, L.P. and B&S Cowart Family L.P to include Cedar Marine Terminals, Crossroad Carriers, Vertex Recovery and H&H Oil. This acquisition brings the entire array of Vertex related companies under the control of Vertex Energy (Nasdaq: VTNR) and results in the publicly traded entity operating in the collection, processing, logistics and trading side of the distressed hydrocarbon business.
2014: Vertex acquires several key assets of Omega Holdings Company, LLC to include the Marrero, LA, based Vacuum Gas Oil re-refinery; the Belle Chase, LA, facility poised for future development; and the Golden States Lubricants blending facility in Bakersfield, CA.
2014: Vertex acquires Heartland Group Holdings, LLC consisting primarily of its used oil collection operations in the Midwest and its re-refinery in Columbus, OH.
2015: Company completes lease agreement for Churchill County, NV, based re-refinery.