Benchrunner Relay: What About The Little Guy?

A month or so has passed, but Hines Horticulture’s bankruptcy situation is still fresh on our minds. Brian Bartels, president of Bartels Plants in West Olive, Mich., is still thinking about it as well. He expressed his concern for those companies affected by the recent development in a letter to us.

I just received my October issue of Greenhouse Grower and I am a bit disappointed with the wording of the Hines bankruptcy story (page 12). After mentioning debt of as much as $500 million and assets of less than $50,000 Greenhouse Grower states “The news is certainly disappointing because Hines made strides over the last couple of years to set itself on the right course.”

Excuse me did you just say a company that ran up a $499,950,000 debt over asset had made strides to set itself on the right course? You have a rather different idea of what right strides are than I do. What is disappointing to me is you mention several men who lead this company right down the drain and give little attention to the companies left holding the bag as these company executives run off to court to secure themselves protection.

Mr. Tenant is quoted as saying “Our goal is to preserve and strengthen our business so that we can compete successfully in the industry.” What a joke. Obviously, the goal is to pad the pocket of a few and then use bankruptcy court to protect those that lead this company down the drain. It is disappointing to me that Greenhouse Grower seems to have more compassion for those who left people holding a $499,950,000 bag than to companies who have to try to keep solvent after being left hanging.

Brian Bartels
President, Bartels Plants

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4 comments on “Benchrunner Relay: What About The Little Guy?

  1. Anonymous

    I agree with Mr. Bartels regarding the Hines situation. How can a company in this business get so financially lopsided? I left banking to get into this business with my family. Maybe some of these investment bankers who purchased Hines need to get out of their offices and into the greenhouse!

  2. Anonymous

    I agree with Mr. Bartels regarding the Hines situation. How can a company in this business get so financially lopsided? I left banking to get into this business with my family. Maybe some of these investment bankers who purchased Hines need to get out of their offices and into the greenhouse!