The oil and gas downturn has claimed another in Colorado, this time in the Weld County oil patch.
Trinity Energy Solutions, based in Garden City since 2006, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in late November, seeking to liquidate more than $708,000 in debt.
Trinity has closed its doors and let its small staff — 15 at its highest — go. The company, at 600 26th St., was an oil and gas services company that focused on emissions control separators and vapor recovery units, equipment vital on oil and gas well sites in that they help keep emissions and vapors from escaping into the atmosphere.
Sagging demand helped push down oil prices, which delivered a one-two punch to all in the industry. Layoffs at the likes of Halliburton, Baker Hughes and Noble Energy were the first major sign of problems.
The downturn put exploration and production companies in a situation in which they could drive down prices for vendor services, such as Trinity.
Trinity owner Steven Hall, a Greeley-Evans District 6 School Board member, said it’s the nature of the business.
“The market turned and nobody saw it, and that’s what happened,” Hall said Tuesday. “It’s just business, and it’s difficult. Nobody likes it; it’s the worst thing you have to go through, and sometimes you end up having to do” things like file bankruptcy.
According to Haynes and Boone, a global law firm that produces the Oil Patch Bankruptcy Monitor, as of Nov. 8, 36 oil and gas companies across the nation have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this year, three in Colorado, and one in Colorado that was filed against Sefton Resources involuntarily but that was dismissed in bankruptcy court Nov. 13.
Chapter 11 is different from Chapter 7, which allows debtors to liquidate their debt. Chapter 11 allows companies to restructure to allow filers to pay off their bills.
Of all the filings, there was more than $13 billion in debt, according to Haynes and Boon. Texas leads the country with 16 filings or $1.15 billion in debt.
The Colorado companies that filed for Chapter 11 this year are, according to Haynes and Boone’s report: American Eagle Energy Company, with operations in North Dakota, in May with $193.6 million in debt; Sun River Energy, also filed in May with $11.6 million in debt; and Escalara Resources, which has operations in Wyoming, filed in November with $42.8 million in debt.
Hall moved Trinity Energy Solutions to Colorado from Farmington, N.M., in 2006 at the request of a couple of oilfield companies, he said.
He said that doors have now shut permanently.
“This is it for Trinity,” Hall said.
This article was written by Sharon Dunn from Greeley Tribune, Colo. and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.