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Business Observer Wednesday, Apr. 8, 2009 12 years ago

Former execs ready to let sparks fly

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Mike Bennett and David Hicks are back in the electric contracting business. The two former Aladdin Ward Electric and Air executives plan to open and run the Sarasota office of Orlando-based electric contractor Bright Future Electric LLC.

Mike Bennett and David Hicks are back in the electric contracting business.

The two former Aladdin Ward Electric and Air executives plan to open and run the Sarasota office of Orlando-based electric contractor Bright Future Electric LLC.

Hicks and state Sen. Bennett left Houston-based Integrated Electrical Services, which bought Aladdin Ward in 1998, in September as part of corporate restructure.

“Mike had a long-term relationship with the principal of Bright Future over the past ten years, both politically and in the construction industry,” Hicks says. “They felt the timing was right to further expand. This will be a stand-alone office with
Mike and I running this branch.”

The new Sarasota division is currently operating from a temporary office in a retail mall at Clark and Beneva roads. Bright Future Electric, which generates $48 million a year in gross revenue, has branch locations in Ocoee, Destin and Birmingham, Ala.

Hicks expects to hire 10 to 15 employees in the next 90 days and is already in the bidding process for a $1.2-million electrical contract for a new assisted living facility and a $2.3-million athletic-facility contract.

“This brings the management of Aladdin Ward together with the capabilities of a larger company,” Hicks says. “The large condo high-rise projects that we used to work on are in the past. Now, we're seeing a resurgence in infrastructure, schools and medical construction.”

In a year, the company is projected to grow to more than 100 employees and at least $10-million worth of projects Hicks says.

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