Proficient Auto Logistics plans to merge five firms

The Jacksonville-based company filed April 11 for an initial public offering.

  • By Mark Basch
  • | 12:05 a.m. April 18, 2024
  • | 4 Free Articles Remaining!
Proficient Auto Transport CEO Randy Beggs.
Proficient Auto Transport CEO Randy Beggs.
Proficient Auto Transport
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Proficient Auto Logistics Inc., a Jacksonville-based auto transportation and logistics company, is looking to profit from a post-coronavirus rebound in automobile production as it launches an initial public offering.

The company’s primary business is shipping new cars from manufacturers to dealers. It was formed to merge five automobile transport companies that together produced $415 million in 2023 revenue.

The mergers will be completed when the IPO closes, according to Proficient’s registration statement filed April 11 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The largest of the five companies is Jacksonville-based Proficient Auto Transport Inc., which was founded in 1993.

That company had revenue of $135.8 million and net income of $7.2 million last year, according to the SEC filing.

Proficient Auto Transport CEO Randy Beggs will become president and chief operating officer of the merged Proficient Auto Logistics.

Proficient Auto Logistics Inc. will be run by CEO Richard O’Dell, a board chairman at Saia Inc.

Richard O’Dell, retired CEO of Georgia-based trucking company Saia Inc., will be chief executive of the merged company. He is currently nonexecutive chairman of Saia.

The other four auto transport firms are two New Jersey-based companies, Delta Automotive Services Inc. and Tribeca Automotive Inc., and two California-based companies, Deluxe Auto Carriers Inc. and Sierra Mountain Group Inc.

“We will operate one of the largest auto transportation fleets in North America based upon information obtained from leadership of the Auto Haulers Association of America, utilizing roughly 1,130 auto transport vehicles and trailers on a daily basis, including 615 Company-owned transport vehicles and trailers, and employing 649 dedicated employees,” the SEC filing said.

“From our 49 strategically located facilities across the United States, we offer a broad range of auto transportation and logistics services, primarily focused on transporting finished vehicles from automotive production facilities, marine ports of entry, or regional rail yards to auto dealerships around the country,” it said.

The five companies combined produced annual revenue of about $260 million from 2019 to 2021, as automobile manufacturing slowed because of supply chain disruptions and component shortages during the pandemic, the filing said.

However, the companies grew revenue in 2022 and 2023 from market share gains and price increases.

“Industry production volumes are beginning to rebound, and are expected to be a continuing tailwind for the auto transportation and logistics industry throughout the next three to five years,” it said.

“We believe the combination of our executive management team, the management of the Founding Companies, and the fragmented nature of the auto transportation and logistics market will provide us with the capability and opportunity to continue to expand both organically and via effective tuck-in acquisitions.”

Proficient’s headquarters office is at 12276 San Jose Blvd. on Jacksonville’s Southside. The filing does not say how many people it will employ at the corporate headquarters.

The 30-year-old Proficient Auto Transport business, headquartered at 10047 103rd St. on Jacksonville’s Westside, has about 140 employees, it said.

The registration statement does not say how much stock would be sold in the IPO and does not give a timetable.

CSX rated at ‘hold’ ahead of Q1 earnings report

Before CSX Corp.’s first quarter earnings report late April 17, Jefferies analyst Stephanie Moore initiated coverage of the Jacksonville-based railroad company with a “hold” rating.

“With shares above its long-term average and fully discounting an almost 10% EPS compound annual growth rate over the next two years, we think shares are close to fully valued,” Moore said in an April 8 initiation report on major railroad companies.

“We view the rail industry as well within the maturity phase,” she said.

“With just six competitors, the industry is at the end of a multi-decade consolidation story which was capped off with the merger of Canadian Pacific and Kansas City Southern.”

Moore thinks investors need to take a different approach to evaluating rail stocks in this phase.

“With a fresh look at the industry and the competitors, unburdened by investment theses of the past, we think the Street continues to put too much emphasis on structural margin expansion, and we see growing disconnect between the investment community investing in these assets and the management teams running them,” she said.

“Said another way, investors and analysts still want structural margin expansion, while the rails themselves are focused on service and volume growth.”

Soler & Palau acquires air control firm in Chattanooga

Jacksonville-based Soler & Palau USA acquired certain operating companies of United Enertech Holdings, according to an April 15 news release by S&P USA’s financial adviser Heritage Capital Group.

S&P USA specializes in designing and manufacturing ventilation products for commercial, industrial and residential applications.

Chattanooga, Tennessee-based United Enertech manufactures products for the HVAC industry including high-quality dampers, louvers and diffusers.

S&P USA said the addition of United Enertech provides customers with a single-source ventilation system solution.

Terms of the deal were not announced.



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