Erath Iron and Metal
Brad & Nicole Boyd, Owners
Family businesses aren’t
all that uncommon in the scrap industry. It’s not
unusual to hear about a business passed down from grandpa
with his horse-drawn junk wagon to dad, who invested in
modern trucks, to a son who has made the business high-tech.
Erath Iron and Metal isn’t
unique in the scrap industry because it’s a family
business, but it bucks the male-oriented trend with husband-and-wife
owners Brad and Nicolle Boyd.
While Brad and Nicolle
are co-owners and they both work at the business, Nicolle
noted that they each have their separate duties.
Before getting into the
recycling business, Nicolle, a graduate of Tarleton State
University with a Masters degree in business, had been a
systems administrator and manager for an appraisal firm
for 14 years.
In 1994, Brad got a taste
of the recycling business when he started working for Ronnie
Smith, who then owned Erath Recycling. Brad had the opportunity
to learn all about the business from Smith. “It seemed
to be a great business with many challenges,” Brad
said. “I could see that there was an endless supply
of scrap all across the country.”
When opportunity knocked,
the Boyds answered. Brad said, “We bought Erath Iron
and Metal in November of 2001 from Ronnie and Susan Smith.
It was formerly called Erath Recycling and had been in business
Since the 2001 purchase,
Erath Iron and Metal has doubled in size. “And it’s
growing every day,” Brad said. Part of that growth
can be attributed to the Boyds’ quest to find better
ways to handle the material that comes in. “We constantly
are looking for new ideas to better our processes,”
Brad said. “The less you handle something the better.”
As far as yard equipment,
Brad said, “we currently operate two grapple cranes,
one 1,000-ton LaBounty shear and an 800-ton Colmar shear/baler.
We also bale all of our nonferrous in an HRB baler.”
Besides buying from the
general public six days a week, Erath has more than 100
roll-offs in use. These are “placed throughout Texas,
as a service to our industrial customers,” Brad explained.
“We buy ferrous and non-ferrous metals and have been
buying OCC [old corrugated container] for the past two years.
is shipped “all over America” and Brad noted
that they “also have been exporting it to China, Korea
and India.” Ferrous scrap stays closer to home, mostly
going to steel mills in the Texas region.
Erath also sells new steel,
primarily pipe. “Our local community is primarily
agriculture,” Brad explained. “The community
sells us their scrap and can also buy their new steel all
in one spot.”
Besides the business part
of the business, Erath Iron and Metal also supports the
area youths and charitable organizations with recycling
drives and other events.
Each year, Erath participates
in “Texas Recycles Day.” In 2005, Erath held
a two-week aluminum can drive as part of the program. And
while the local municipality doesn’t have mandatory
recycling, Erath is the city’s recommended recycler
for scrap appliances.
Erath Iron and Metal currently
employs about 25 people. Brad said, “Nicolle and I
enjoy working hard with our employees to make Erath Iron
and Metal what it is today. We take great pride in our business
and firmly believe our success is from our service and being
competitive with the ever-changing scrap markets.”
“What we like about
this business,” Brad summed up, “are the daily
challenges. There is never a dull moment.”