MONTREAL, Que. – Old man winter was at least partially to blame for a mixed Q1 economic report from TransForce Inc.
While the company’s overall revenue was up from the same quarter in 2013, that was mainly the result of the acquisition of Clarke Transport and Clarke Road Transport on January 1 2014. Revenues from Clarke accounted for $44.1 million of TransForce’s total revenue of $770.5 million. In comparison, its 2013 Q1 revenue was $749.70 million.
TransForce’s income from operating activities, as calculated in earnings before income and taxes (EBIT) was $33.2 million, representing 4.3% of total revenue, down significantly from Q1 2013 when it was $44.6 million or 5.9% of total revenue.
According to TransForce chair Alain Bédard, the first quarter results “were affected by more severe winter weather this year compared to last. This factor and persistent softness in certain key sectors of the North American economy explain most of the EBIT decline in package and courier (P&C) and less-than-truckload (LTL) segments, which overshadowed another solid performance from our waste management operations.”
Looking at the future, Bédard expects the company is still going to have to adjust its operations and its business strategies.
“Although business conditions remain challenging due to a weak economy, we are encouraged by certain signs of firmer pricing in the LTL and truckload segments. We are also making steady progress in regards to improving the efficiency of our P&C and LTL networks.
“Still, we must continue to adapt supply to demand by optimizing our asset base. In this regard, we closed four additional rig moving terminals in the U.S. and put these assets up for sale. Going forward, we will also focus on unlocking synergies from the Clarke and Vitran acquisitions, while maximizing return on assets in all segments.”