The Power of Two Experienced Companies

We are unique in our offerings from two companies who share resources, knowledge, and staff. While maintaining separate legal entities, Comstock and Holt provide a combined historic knowledge of 300 years of drawback. Both companies are licensed Customs Brokers and have been integral in the development of the current drawback regulations and remain involved in the evolving statutes and regulations that are underway.

The History of Comstock

Comstock & Theakston, Inc. (Comstock) has specialized exclusively in the recovery of U.S. duty drawback for over 100 years. Our corporate origins can be traced back to a partnership between Frederick M. Comstock and Joseph H. Allen in 1894. This later evolved into a partnership of Mr. Comstock and Mr. Frederick H. Theakston, and on April 16, 1918, the partnership was incorporated as Comstock & Theakston, Inc. Comstock was one of the first firms in the nation to specialize in duty drawback, and throughout the years has established a nationwide reputation for outstanding quality, service, and professionalism.

In 1987, Comstock purchased the oldest continuously operating drawback specialist, C.J. Holt & Co. Inc. (Holt), as a wholly-owned subsidiary. Today, these two companies collaborate seamlessly, sharing staff and resources to optimize duty drawback opportunities for our clients.

The History of Holt

The firm of Charles J. Holt & Son was established in 1856 in New York City by Charles J. Holt and William H. Holt to conduct Customs brokerage and duty drawback. In 1886 the firm of Charles J. Holt & Son was dissolved. The business was continued in the individual name of Charles J. Holt and operated as such until August 1, 1907, when a partnership was formed between Charles J. Holt and John W. Van Buskirk. The partnership was named C.J. Holt & Co. with Charles J. Holt as the senior member.

On January 4, 1919, C.J. Holt & Co. was incorporated as C.J. Holt & Co., Inc. The company remained family held for many years, being passed down to John M. Van Buskirk and eventually to John (Jay) W. Van Buskirk. Jay sold the company on October 10, 1987 to Comstock & Theakston, Inc. C.J. Holt & Co., Inc. (Holt) is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Comstock & Theakston, Inc. with David N. Simcox serving as President for both companies.

In the 1990’s, members of Holt were integral in writing the drawback portion of the Customs Modernization Act and were selected to serve on the Drawback Regulations Team, which rewrote the Drawback Regulations (Part 191) using interest-based problem solving methodology. This method was a new approach to writing regulations because it took into consideration both Customs’ and Trade’s interests and concerns about drawback and reached resolutions which both could support.

Holt played an integral role in lobbying for drawback modernization within the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act (TFTEA). Our team worked directly with CBP in drafting the regulations and continues to be a part of the discussions with CBP and the trade regarding policy and guidance for all drawback matters.

Through the years, Holt has collected duty drawback refunds on commodities such as textiles, petroleum, chemicals, metals, film, tobacco, jewelry, leather, pharmaceuticals, and automobiles. By working with so many different companies on such a variety of commodities for over 160 years, Holt has established its reputation as the most versatile and experienced continuously operating drawback specialist in the United States.