With Alberta in a rut, Transcourt turns attention to US expansion

by Jim Bray

OAKVILLE, Ont. — Tank trailer leasing and long-term rental firm Transcourt is looking to grow its business in the US, as market conditions and the overall economy deteriorate in Western Canada.

Transcourt president Bruce Daccord said in a recent interview with Trucknews.com that its move into the US market is part of a natural progression for the 18-year-old company.

“We’ve incorporated (in the United States) and we’ve got trailers that will be going out on lease,” Daccord said, “so we’ve got a foothold in the US market and we see lots of opportunity there.”

He thinks Transcourt can grow significantly below the Canada/US border, and that now’s the perfect time to do so.

“While things are quiet in the west we can put our resources into (the US) market to strengthen and diversify our business a little bit away from the oil and gas sector,” he said. “And then when things do turn around here, we’ll be in a stronger position.”

Transcourt’s vision, he said, is to be a North America-wide provider of tankers. “A lot of our largest customers have branches all over North America and we’re already supplying equipment to their Canadian branches and we want to be able to offer the same service to their US branches from our US operation. That’s the grand vision.”

To facilitate its American growth, the company has a yard southeast of Chicago, and Daccord said it’s looking at some other locations as well.

But that’s not to say the company is turning its back on its existing markets, including hard-hit Western Canada, where low oil prices have significantly reduced demand for tanker trailers.

“Some (customers) are slow, some are steady, some are very slow – but everyone is doing what they need to do to get through and everyone feels that ultimately it’s going to turn around,” said Daccord. “So it’s a matter of just being prudent; it’s a bit of a waiting game.”

Up until a year or two ago, Western Canada was one of Transcourt’s biggest growth areas, but the company has also seen significant growth in Ontario over the past 18 months and is pushing hard into the Quebec market.

Economic angst notwithstanding, Daccord is bullish on the business. “There’s still lots of opportunities despite this current uncertainty, so we’re still optimistic,” he said.


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