Less than eight months after buying RCC Consultants out of bankruptcy, Black & Veatch will rebrand the consulting unit as Black & Veatch while working to integrate and grow the new business.

RCC Consultants officially will begin doing business as Black & Veatch as IWCE 2016 kicks off on March 21, according to Chris Krafft, vice president of public safety for the Black & Veatch telecommunications business.

“Our strategic intent was to get the consulting piece of the business and combine that with our EPC [engineering, procurement, construction capabilities],” Krafft said during an interview with IWCE’s Urgent Communications. “I think some people have wondered whether we were going to absorb them and get rid of consulting. I think there is some confusion in some pockets out there, but it is absolutely our focus to keep that aspect of the business.

“In retiring that brand name, I was worried people would think that we're retiring consulting, and that is very much not the case ... We would fail at our mission, if we didn't preserve and grow the consulting piece.”

Krafft said the integration of RCC Consultants—purchased for $3.1 million last August, after RCC declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy—“generally is going well,” noting that the operational changes are “substantially complete.”

While some human-resources and information-technology positions were shed, Black & Veatch has retained most of the most of the RCC Consultants consulting staff, Krafft said. Some positions overlapping the existing Black & Veatch commercial-wireless consulting business were dropped and the utility consultants were assigned to the utility arm of Black & Veatch, but the LMR and 911 consultants are members of the Black & Veatch public-safety team, he said.

“The consulting staff and the engineering staff have remained intact, to a very good extent,” Krafft said. “It's one of the success measures we're looking at.”

From a business standpoint, RCC Consultants saw several customers depart during the bankruptcy process, but Black & Veatch has been able to retain the vast majority of the consulting clients since the purchase was announced, even though public-safety consulting is new to Black & Veatch, Krafft said.

“We've been reaching out to clients to describe the new environment,” he said. “The stability resonates with them, and they're happy for the new environment. So, things are headed in the right direction.”

Customers seem to like the notion that Black & Veatch has both consulting and design/build expertise, Krafft said.

“In visiting with clients, I'm seeing a lot of head nodding—they see how those two can complement each other,” Krafft said. “We're sensitive to conflicts of interest, of course, but how Black & Veatch as a whole can provide value to clients, that message seems to be resonating.

“Even if clients only need consulting, there's so many times we can bring in site-acquisition expertise or structural-mount expertise, because that's where some of these project derail. With RCC and all of its technology expertise, it's really bringing a lot to bear with the entire network-deployment expertise.”