Allen Lund, named Best Broker by the National Association of Small Trucking Companies, takes pride in being able to exceed client’s expectations, using innovative methods to do so. For example, the Southern California-based company partnered with a Texas produce outfit to offer LTL transportation services that could better meet the needs of mutual customers shipping product from South Texas. The partnership proved so successful that Lund expanded the operation to serve the Northeast and Midwest.
ECHO GLOBAL LOGISTICS
Echo, a leader in providing technology-enabled transportation and supply-chain services, uses a web-based platform that compiles and analyzes data from its network of more than 24,000 transportation providers to serve clients’ shipping and freight management needs. Its proprietary LTL pricing engine, RateIQ 2.0, a web-based service designed for the LTL transportation mode, efficiently prices the shipping of items that typically weigh between 150 and 10,000 pounds. The service obtains real-time pricing and transit time information from LTL carriers, combines it with Echo proprietary algorithms and shares this information with clients to provide them optimal rates and transit times in less than a second. RateIQ 2.0 currently processes more than one million such requests for Echo clients each month. RateIQ 2.0 was recently selected as a finalist for the Chicago Innovation Awards, which celebrate the most innovative new products and services in the Chicago region across all organization sizes, sectors and industries.
EVANS DISTRIBUTION SYSTEMS
Michigan-based Evans made its reputation in providing automotive logistics, but the company, founded in 1929, has steadily grown its client list and the industries it serves by incorporating two warehousing and distribution companies (Central Detroit Warehouse and Progressive Distribution Centers), three truckload carriers (Merchants Forwarding Co., Maverig Freight and Alden Logistics), a transportation management company (Evans Logistics) and a temporary staffing agency (Evans Resource Solutions). The company has also expanded operations to serve customers on the East Coast from their facility near the Ports of Norfolk, Virginia.
Having started with a single vehicle in 1981, Hartsfield understands how critical it is for small and medium-sized businesses to streamline their operations, but also the number of service providers it utilizes. Locally owned and operated, with locations in Atlanta, Savannah and Charlotte, Hartsfield is a completely integrated provider of distribution, warehousing, import, export and trucking services.
KANE IS ABLE
Besides having the most unique name in the business, Kane has grown into a full-service 3PL managing 8.5 million square feet of warehouse space with a network of 18 distribution center locations in multiple states, making it more than capable to work with the likes of PepsiCo, Wal-Mart and Proctor & Gamble. Still, Kane sees a major part of its mission as serving the needs of mid-size, consumer product goods companies, understanding such companies require a logistics partner as much as a provider.
Landstar recognizes that shrinking margins have made it critical for small and mid-size companies to get the truck capacity that fits their needs; flexibility and scalability are imperative. The company’s state-of-the-art technology allows clients to outsource all or any portion of their supply chain to Landstar. Likewise, the company is responsive in anticipating the needs of its customers, offering a full menu of value-added services including specialties such as HazMat handling, sub-assembly and custom labeling.
LEGACY SUPPLY CHAIN SERVICES
One thing Legacy does best is structure distribution networks, something it expanded on earlier this year when it acquired Vitran Corp. Inc.’s supply-chain operation, which specializes in complex, high-velocity networks servicing North American retailers. This immediately expands Legacy’s distribution footprint to 40 facilities, four transportation offices and more than six million square feet of dedicated and multi-client warehouse space in North America and enhances the company’s ability to provide high-touch service and full-service solutions to its clients, enhanced by its Tier 1 technology.
LYNNCO SUPPLY CHAIN SOLUTIONS
LynnCo is known for coming up with innovative logistics solutions—primarily in transportation management—that ultimately translate into reducing operating costs for its clients. When commercial window-maker EFCO hired LynnCo to manage its private fleet of trucks, LynnCo immediately identified that the fleet was not being utilized correctly. The company’s business model was built around full loads, though many jobs required LTLs. LynnCo immediately set about optimizing the EFCO fleet, right-sizing it and ultimately providing significant savings to the company by transporting things much more efficiently.
Though it deals in retail and consumer goods, MD is well known for its logistical expertise in dealing with pharmaceuticals. Their standing with that industry took a big step forward this year when the company’s 200,000-square-foot pharma facility near the Indianapolis International Airport Authority was granted FTZ status by U.S. Customs. The designation allows goods to move into the temperature-controlled, cGMP-compliant warehouse before customs clearance is granted, thereby greasing their clients’ supply chains.
With 25 locations spread out over North America, Protrans is proud of its lean logistical style, something it does through an efficient use of technology that allows the company to adapt to customers’ needs. Part of that lean approach is the willingness to constantly redefine and reinvent how it handles clients’ supply chains, and since the company is not dependent upon a fixed fleet or fixed facility infrastructure it is able to focus on best-in-class solutions that best fit each customer’s needs.