Freight railroad CSX Corp. today said it will acquire the bulk liquid chemicals truck transportation specialist Quality Carriers Inc. in a move the company said will create the nation’s first integrated multimodal chemical transportation solution.
Jacksonville, Florida-based CSX purchased the trucking line from the Tampa, Florida-based global logistics and transportation provider Quality Distribution Inc., which has been owned since 2015 by the private equity firm Apax Partners.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but following the deal, Quality Carriers said it will become a standalone entity within CSX, remain headquartered in Tampa, and continue to be managed by its current president, Randy Strutz.
Quality Carriers operates what it calls the most extensive bulk tank trucking fleet in North America, with around 2,500 drivers and a network of over 100 company-owned and affiliate terminals and facilities in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. By linking that organization to CSX, Quality Carriers said its customers will gain access to a wider range of cost-effective shipping options for their needs, utilizing a combination of integrated rail and trucking transportation networks that will allow them to maximize capacity and delivery efficiencies.
“Our new partnership will provide chemical producers and shippers with a first-of-its-kind multimodal solution that capitalizes on the powerful synergies between Quality Carriers’ truck transportation fleet and our cost-advantaged rail network. We believe that this new capability will create meaningful long-term value for our company,” CSX President and CEO James Foote said in a release.
The move is CSX’ latest step to expand, following its 2020 deal to acquire the large regional carrier Pan Am Railways Inc. and expand its reach throughout the densely-populated New England states. CSX had also added to its intermodal service network in 2019 through a deal with Canadian National Inc. designed to convert long-haul trucking freight to interline rail services. It also comes as the North American freight rail sector continues to move through a period of consolidation, with Canadian National and Canadian Pacific Railway locked in a bidding war to buy Kansas City Southern.
Another impact of the deal is that CSX’ purchase of Quality Carriers will change the corporate structure of the firm’s parent company, Quality Distribution.
Following the move, Quality Distribution will phase out its name and convert its wholly-owned subsidiary Boasso Global into a standalone entity, likewise owned by Apax Partners and headquartered in Tampa. As a provider of intermodal tank container and depot services with operations in seven countries, “Boasso will continue to focus its efforts on strong organic and inorganic expansion opportunities in the high-growth, international ISO Tank market,” the company said.
In conjunction with those changes, Quality Distribution Chairman and CEO Gary Enzor will step down from his role and continue as a member of Boasso Global’s board of directors. The new Boasso Global will then be led by CEO Joe Troy, who will rise from his current position as a board member and EVP & CFO of Quality Distribution.
$CSX has reached an agreement to acquire @QualityCarriers Inc., the largest provider of bulk liquid chemical truck transportation in North America. This acquisition will enable CSX to further expand the comprehensive supply chain solutions we provide to our customers.— CSX (@CSX) May 12, 2021