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Your in-depth look at the capacity, capabilities and future direction of the nation’s largest carriers

Welcome to our second annual Top Tier report offering a comprehensive look at the nation's largest for-hire carriers. In the following pages you will find detailed and up-to-date information about the...


Welcome to our second annual Top Tier report offering a comprehensive look at the nation’s largest for-hire carriers. In the following pages you will find detailed and up-to-date information about the capacity and capabilities of the 100 largest for-hire motor carriers in Canada, as well as the next 25. You will also find statistics about their vehicle replacement strategies and buying plans for 2007. This exclusive data is from annual research conducted by our sister company, BIG Transportation Media research.

While Ottawa’s move last year to curb the growing trend towards income trusts may serve to temporarily slow down merger and acquisition plans among Canada’s largest fleets it cannot alter the growing industry understanding that size does matter. The increasingly sophisticated service and quality demands from shippers requires carriers to grow into either very strong niche players or large players with a wide geographic reach and services portfolios.

There were 135 US or Canadian transportation-related M&A transactions in 2006, according to market analysts BMO Capital Markets, and trucking operations were amongst the most aggressive. The new legislation, which places trusts on an even footing with corporate tax rules, may clip the wings somewhat of income fund structured players such as TransForce Income Fund, Contrans Income Fund and Mullen Group Income Fund, which had been extremely active acquirers in recent years and spearheaded the trend towards motor carrier consolidation. But all that will likely mean is more opportunities for the traditionally structured players to more aggressively pursue mergers and acquisitions.

This comprehensive guide is not intended as a mere tally of vehicle counts. In fact, we have chosen not to list the top 100 carriers by size. The top 100 carriers, as well as the next 25, are listed in alphabetical order because we believe that after a certain threshold, optimum fleet size is a reflection of the different markets these fleets are meant to serve.

The nation’s largest carriers influence the industry through more than the sheer size of their operations and their ability to drive industry consolidation. Their vision of the industry’s future and the growing sophistication with which they plan their strategies are also highly influential. Keeping that in mind, we asked six of the industry’s top CEOs to share their insights on how commercial transportation will evolve over the next 25 years. I think you will find their comments informative and insightful.

I would also like to thank the founding sponsors of our Top Tier report, Peoplenet Canada, Mack Canada and Kinedyne who continue with their support. Their support is instrumental in helping us deliver such a comprehensive report.

We hope our report serves as a tool not only for the largest carriers to keep tabs on their competitors but also as a tool for the smaller and medium-sized fleets to contrast their buying strategies with the industry’s largest and gain a fuller understanding of the trends and issues they can expect to deal with in future years.


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