NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Truckload carriers in the U.S. show continuing confidence in the year ahead but one in four carriers are still considering leaving the industry over the next 18 months, according to the results from Transport Capital Partners’ recent Business Expectations Survey.
TCP, which specializes in transportation mergers and acquisitions, uses the quarterly survey to collect the insights and opinions of executives nationwide in order to report on the current state of the industry and future expectations, the firm said.
“TCP’s surveys over the last five quarters clearly show carriers have become more confident in rates and volumes, but in the short run a substantial number of carriers (one in eight) say they are considering leaving if tonnage does not increase in six months,” Richard Mikes, a managing partner for TCP, said. “Over a quarter of carriers would be interested in selling over the next 18 months.”
Lana Batts, a managing partner for TCP and a former president of the Truckload Carriers Association, notes a disparity between in the results based a fleet size.
“The survey shows that small carriers generally are less optimistic and more anxious to sell than their larger competitors (with over $25 million in revenue), with the total number of carriers saying they would be interested in selling up about 50 percent over last quarter,” Batts said.
The good news for those looking to get out of the business is that other truckers are looking to make deals.
“In general, more carriers are interested in buying (37 percent) compared to selling (28 percent), led by larger carriers with a 2-to-1 margin over smaller carriers,” Mikes said. He added that this may be reflective of public carriers with larger cash positions.
Batts and Mikes both expressed that conditions are ripe for a flurry of acquisitions in the next 18 months.
Kevin Jones of The Trucker staff can be reached for comment at email@example.com.
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