Greatwide Logistics Services brings together a world of freight transportation and logistics companies. The third-party logistics provider offers dedicated transportation, in which drivers and equipment are assigned to a customer long-term; distribution logistics; truckload freight brokerage; and truckload freight transportation, largely via a network of more than 20,000 independent owner-operators. Greatwide calls upon a fleet of some 5,000 trucks and has 3 million sq. ft. of warehouse space in the US. Clients have included such heavy hitters as Target, Wal-Mart, and IBM. Greatwide emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2009 after being acquired by an investor group.
The investor group was led by Centerbridge Capital Partners and affiliates of D.E. Shaw & Co. Greatwide, like other transportation and logistics companies, had been hit hard by the slowing economy and rising fuel prices. Greatwide received more than $73.6 million in financing to continue operating at the time.
Greatwide intends to continue to cultivate relationships with agents that help market its services and truck owner-operators that help provide them. The company believes it can generate better investment returns by maintaining its asset-light business model than it could by investing extensively in transportation equipment and infrastructure.
The company started 2011 off with the acquisition of Overton Transportation from Sysco. Not only does the acquisition promote the company's one-way truckload offerings, but greater access to food delivery services, a portion of the trucking industry less prone to the adverse affects of a recession. Overton's operations, which will be rolled into Greatwide Freight, brings some 70 tractors and 100 trailers to the company. In late 2009 Greatwide bought the dedicated contract carriage business of YRC Logistics (now MIQ Logistics). For $34 million, Greatwide netted YRC Logistics' customer contracts, along with its trucks and trailers. The deal bolstered Greatwide's footprint in the food and grocery, consumer products, steel and automotive, and retail industries. About 600 workers transferred to Greatwide from YRC.
In 2010 CEO Raymond Greer stepped down and was replaced by chairman Leo Suggs, who has led Greatwide's board of directors since 2009. Suggs previously held executive leadership positions at UPS Freight, Overnite Transportation, Preston Trucking, Yellow Freight, and Ryder/PIE. – less