Thursday, June 14, 2012


Transaction Expected to Significantly Enhance Arkansas Best’s End-To-End Solutions Offering 

Offers Asset-Light Platform for Growth in $700 Billion Transportation and Logistics Market

Arkansas Best Corporation, a leading provider of freight transportation and logistics solutions, today announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Panther Expedited Services, Inc. (“Panther”), from Fenway Partners LLC, a leading middle market private equity firm. The total transaction value is approximately $180 million, subject to post-closing adjustments, with all of Panther’s  outstanding debt being repaid as part of the transaction.  The acquisition is scheduled to close on or about June 15, 2012, subject to customary conditions, including the funding of a new term loan agreement for Arkansas Best.

Panther is North America’s largest independent expedited transportation and premium logistics provider.  Panther reported approximately $215 million in revenue (unaudited) and $24 million of adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (“Adjusted EBITDA”) in 2011. (“Adjusted EBITDA”, for this purpose, includes adjustments for management fees/expenses.)  Panther’s specialized equipment, technology and expertise in expedited transportation, premium logistics and global forwarding will enhance Arkansas Best’s end-to-end solutions offering, providing more of the services that customers increasingly demand.  The current Panther management team is expected to remain in place to manage and grow the business.

“Panther Expedited Services is an excellent strategic fit for our company and our customers as we seek to offer end-to-end logistics solutions for progressively more complex supply chains,” said Arkansas Best President and Chief Executive Officer Judy R. McReynolds.  “We are very enthusiastic about this unique transaction, which met all of our criteria for growth among many options we analyzed for several years.”  Full  report.........

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