In explaining his decision to sell his company, Tishman Construction, to AECOM Technology Corp., Daniel R. Tishman notes that the company lacked the very deep financial resources needed to establish new overseas offices and maintain itself as a major market player. “It’s a very expensive proposition to open an office in the Middle East,” he said onJuly 19 in New York City.
And with those words, the respected leader of one of construction’s most famous family-owned companies summed up why AECOM and its competitor, URS Corp., have been able to acquire planetary mass to make themselves the dual centers of a new universe of engineering megafirms. AECOM is rich with cash from earnings and a 2007 initial public offering and needs to put more of its cash to work. Together with URS, AECOM has consolidated and provided buyout capital in a field that otherwise would be starving for investors.