MOST VERSATILE

GOING THE EXTRA MILE Pilot Freight Services’ Premier Service offers in-home delivery, unpacking, assembly and debris removal—and not just for homes.

GOING THE EXTRA MILE Pilot Freight Services’ Premier Service offers in-home delivery, unpacking, assembly and debris removal—and not just for homes.

A.N. DERINGER

Deringer began in 1919 as a customs broker and still provides that service along with myriad others including warehousing, cargo insurance, international transportation and USDA meat inspection. Supporting those services are more than 30 customer service centers located along the U.S.-Canadian border and at major air and vessel ports around the country. “We try and do all of it with a really strong focus on customer service and regulatory compliance,” says Deringer CEO Jake Holzscheiter.

AFN

Having started their careers in backhauling, it’s not surprising that company founders Michael Nervick and Ryan Daube came up with an innovative way to deal with trucking companies. AFN treats carriers as if they were clients, with all the attention and customers service that entails. In that way, AFN has not only built a great reputation within trucking circles but that has given them a flexibility to get anyone when they want, which is how AFN, founded just 10 years ago, has been able to grow so quickly.

BENDER

Reno-based Bender recently received the Wisdom of Age award from a local business magazine for its ability to adapt to the times. Perhaps it’s in warehousing that Bender best shows its flexibility; with facilities not only on both coasts but a new one in Nevada, Bender offers a wide range of services—food grade, retail and reverse logistics, FTZ services—and has become adept at meeting the needs of clients transitioning from brick and mortar sales to E-fulfillment.

COLUMBIAN LOGISTICS NETWORK

Relatively small with about 250 employees, Columbian nonetheless offers a full slate of local and regional delivery services through transportation assets that are fully integrated with warehouse operations. The Midwest-based and -operated company says it’s able to compete with bigger companies because it adheres to founder Barend Zevalkink’s dictum: “Not service at cost, but service at any cost.”

CORPORATE TRAFFIC LOGISTICS

A constant comment about Corporate is that they operate in anything but a corporate manner, probably because trucking has been a passion for owners Christopher, Chad and Craig Cline since their childhood days when they ran their own make-believe trucking outfit complete with office staff and outsourced drivers, i.e. neighborhood kids on bikes. That passion drives Corporate’s attention to detail, providing what one client said was “customized reports and customer service to operational assistance they are unmatched.”

JOHANSON TRANSPORTATION SERVICES

JTS is an example of a company that displays its versatility in serving one industry. In JTS’ case that would be companies that ship food and food ingredients, a category with numerous industries, each demanding their own expertise and protocols. One doesn’t ship baked goods the same way one ships spices, nor does one ship chickens the same way as wine and spirits (sorry chickens). For each, JTS lays out a specific procedure, what the folks at JTS call their Just Timely Solutions (see what they did there?).

KOCH LOGISTICS

When CVS, the nation’s largest retail pharmacy, acquired 1,268 Eckerd- and 700 Albertson-owned drugstores, they needed a full-service partner to help transition the stores quickly. Koch coordinated warehouse pickups, store deliveries, delivery of racking, shelving and carts to nearly 2,000 stores. Koch was able to facilitate the transition in less than a year per project. Afterwards, Joe Estrella, then-director of transportation and logistics for CVS, said: ““I’ve been doing this for a long time, and Koch is one of the best in the business.”

PILOT FREIGHT SERVICES

After opening its first European station in Amsterdam in 2011, the company hit the $500 million revenue mark in 2012, with 40 percent growth in special services and 20 percent in home delivery. Pilot expanded into Canada, opening a Toronto station in 2012, the same year it expanded its European footprint by opening a station in A Coruña, Spain offering a full suite of transportation and logistics services, handling freight en route to the EU, China, U.S. and South America.

SEKO LOGISTICS

SEKO works under what they call a “flat management structure,” which in no way indicates a lack of ideas when it comes to doing what they do. That flat structure puts just three layers between customer and CEO, and SEKO believes this lean structure allows them to be “fast on our feet” in assessing issues and delivering solutions to clients. The company’s ability to implement customized IT solutions that provide a smooth flow of information is all the more impressive when you consider that SEKO associates are spread out in 120 offices in 40 countries, ensuring that the likes of Kellogg’s will be able to move Corn Flakes off the shelves or create a transparent and cost efficient supply chain for British home furnishings company Cath Kidston. “The SEKO team has worked alongside us to create a simple, smooth and more effective supply chain,” said Helena Dawson, head of Kidston’s supply chain. “It’s been great for business and I can now see more of my supply chain and manage it more efficiently.”

TUCKER COMPANY WORLDWIDE

America’s oldest privately held freight brokerage, Tucker covers all of North America and the globe with all modes of transportation, everything from routine LTL to the selection and use of credentialed and high security carriers. That’s necessary since the company moves a wide range of products with a particular expertise in areas such as extremely high value goods and high safety and security cargo including pharmaceuticals, specialty chemicals, electronics and medical diagnostics.

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