The third-party logistics provider (3PL) Quiet Logistics Inc. has been acquired for the second time in two years, as one of its clients—the clothing retailer American Eagle Outfitters—today said it had paid $350 million for the company, saying the move would let it take the next step in an “ongoing supply chain transformation.”
The Devens, Massachusetts-based fulfillment provider, which is also known as Quiet 3PF, was co-founded in 2009 by Bruce Welty, who had also founded its sister company, the autonomous mobile robot (AMR) vendor Locus Robotics. Quiet 3PF has been co-owned since 2019 by the real estate development firms Greenfield Partners and Related Companies LP.
Following the deal, Quiet 3PF will be a wholly-owned subsidiary of American Eagle (AEO) and will continue to run its business independently. In that role, Quiet will both support AEO’s continued growth and also expand its own customer base to other brands and retailers seeking advanced logistics capabilities.
Before purchasing Quiet 3PF, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based AEO had been a client of the firm, saying the 3PL has a strength in providing technology and robotics to support order fulfillment and returns management services through DCs located in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, St. Louis, and Jacksonville. That network of sites allows Quiet 3PF to locate products close to need, create inventory efficiencies, and provide affordable same-day and next-day delivery options to customers and stores, AEO said.
Buying Quiet 3PF is AEO’s latest move to drive change in its supply chain operations, following its purchase of another 3PL, Seattle-based Airterra Inc., for an undisclosed amount in September. AEO likewise said it plans to continue running Airterra as an independent business serving other retailers, even as it uses the 3PL to leverage its network of stores and DCs to fill orders and offer same-day services at comparable speeds to competing merchants like Amazon Inc., Walmart Inc. and Target Corp.
“An important pillar of our strategy is transforming our supply chain to create greater agility, speed, and diversification. Our vision is to create an on-demand, hyper-scaled operations platform that enables brand success,” Jay Schottenstein, AEO’s executive chairman and CEO, said in a release. “Quiet Logistics has provided significant benefits to AEO over the past year and we are leveraging our healthy cash position to ensure ongoing advantages. Also, as we continue to expand these services to other brands and retailers, we believe the business will scale, generating incremental value for our shareholders.”