Companies in this industry exterminate and control insects and other pests. Major companies include US-based Terminix (owned by ServiceMaster) and Orkin (owned by Rollins), as well as the pest control operations of Rentokil Initial and EcoLab (both based in the UK) and Sanix (Japan).
Global demand for exterminating and pest control services is rising as economies expand and middle-class populations increase. Companies in the industry typically operate locally and regionally, but some large companies are beginning to expand internationally.
The US pest control services industry includes about 13,000 establishments (single-location companies and branches of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $11 billion. Companies that provide pest control services related to agricultural and timber production are not included in the industry.
Demand is driven by sales and occupancy of residential, commercial, and industrial properties. The profitability of individual companies depends on providing good service. Large companies benefit from brand recognition and economies of scale in purchasing and administration, as well as from the ability to serve commercial accounts that include locations in multiple markets. Small companies can compete successfully by specializing in a type of service or a local market. The US industry is fragmented: the 50 largest firms generate less than 50 percent of industry revenue.
PRODUCTS, OPERATIONS & TECHNOLOGY
Pest control firms, also called pest control operators (PCOs), identify the presence of pests and apply poisonous chemicals or other methods to eliminate them.