Bradley Jacobs, chairman and chief executive officer, said, “We improved our performance in several key areas in the second quarter. We increased total gross margin dollars by 18% compared with the second quarter last year, reversing a decline in the prior period. We turned a corner in freight forwarding with the first year-over-year revenue increase in five quarters. And we drove double-digit growth in the top line and the profitability of our expedited business. While our investments in infrastructure affect our earnings in the short-term, they are critical to our plan for growth. We’re transforming the company to create significant value over time.”
Jacobs continued, “Today, we’re either on track or ahead of schedule with the three core components of our plan: acquisitions, cold-starts and the optimization of operations. We’re pleased to have purchased Kelron Logistics as we continue to expand our brokerage operations. Kelron is a non-asset brokerage business with approximately $100 million in revenue and 20 years of industry relationships. Its 2,500 carriers should be a valuable addition to our network. We plan to drive efficiencies at all four Kelron locations by providing access to our centralized carrier capacity and by migrating them to our IT system. We’ve successfully implemented this model with Continental Freight Services, which we bought in May.
“Our cold-start program is also progressing well. We now have seven new brokerage branches in place, versus our initial target of five openings by year-end. Through a disciplined mix of acquisitions and cold-starts, we've now more than doubled our total brokerage revenue from a year ago. This growth is being supported by our national operations center in Charlotte, where we expect to have more than 100 people focused solely on carrier procurement by December. We remain comfortable with our projection for a $500 million annual revenue run rate by year-end.”