Friday, May 04, 2012

ABF Service Centers Recognized as 'Best of the Best' with President's Quality Awards

ABF service centers in Kansas City, Mo., Seattle, Wash., Ogden, Utah, and St. Joseph, Mo., are being recognized with the prestigious President’s Quality Award from ABF President and CEO Roy Slagle. The award recognizes service centers most exemplifying the ABF Quality Process, which are considered the “Best of the Best.”

“The use of the five-step problem elimination process and the use of focus groups to tackle problems are deeply ingrained in our culture and have served us well for over 25 years,” said Mr. Slagle. “This approach to quality enhances the value of the product we offer the marketplace and heightens customers’ perception of ABF and our people. The conscientious dockworkers, truck drivers, account managers, supervision and support staffs at these four service centers are setting the pace by their relentless pursuit of quality. I'm looking forward to my visit with each one in celebration of their achievement.”

Each facility is presented with a prestigious President’s Quality Award trophy and earns a listing at the ABF General Office. The award ceremonies are attended by the ABF Quality Implementation Committee, local employees and special guests.

All ABF service centers annually undergo extensive evaluations, including a nomination process, a quality awareness survey, an on-site validation audit, and scrutiny by the ABF Quality Implementation Committee. The comprehensive process gauges resource management, damage/loss prevention, customer satisfaction and other key performance indicators for the previous year. The ABF Quality Process uses a five-step problem elimination process: 1) define the problem; 2) fix the problem; 3) identify the root cause; 4) take corrective action; 5) evaluate and follow up. Education through quality seminars, job-skills training, focus groups and designated quality teams have ensured that quality at ABF is a process, not merely a program. Based on principles articulated by the late Philip Crosby, the process emphasizes ongoing prevention rather than end-of-line inspection. Identifying and eliminating the causes of problems improves service and requires no additional expenditure.

YRC’s USF Holland president resigns for ‘other opportunities’

One of YRC Worldwide Inc.’s regional trucking companies is losing its leader.

In a Securities and Exchange Commission    filing Thursday, the Overland Park-based company disclosed that Michael Naatz, president of USF Holland, was resigning, effective May 4, “to pursue other opportunities.”

YRC did not provide additional information.

Naatz was made president of USF Holland last year. He worked for USF Corp. for 11 years until YRC bought the company in 2005. He also worked as chief integration officer for the Yellow-Roadway combination and as president of YRC’s customer care division.

USF Holland provides regional deliveries to 12 states and two Canadian provinces in a swath of the mid-Atlantic and upper Midwest.

YRC doesn’t break out operational statistics for its individual regional subsidiaries, which also include USF Reddaway and New Penn. But it said that during the first quarter, the three companies reported a 4.7 percent increase in tons shipped daily and a 12.6 percent gain in revenue.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

YRC Worldwide Achieves Continued Year-over-Year First Quarter Operating Improvement

Results Build on Agreements with Lenders that Provide Years of Financial Flexibility

-- YRC Freight tons per day up 3.5%, revenue per hundredweight up 3.3%, operating revenue up 8.1%
-- Regional tons per day up 6.0%, revenue per hundredweight up 4.5%, operating revenue up 9.8%

YRC Worldwide Inc. today reported financial results for the first quarter of 2012.

Consolidated operating revenue for the seasonally slow first quarter of 2012 was $1.194 billion, up 6.4% over 2011, and consolidated operating loss was $48.8 million, which included an $8.4 million loss on asset disposals. As a comparison, the company reported consolidated operating revenue of $1.123 billion for the first quarter of 2011 and a consolidated operating loss of $68.4 million, which included a $3.0 million gain on asset disposals.  On Monday, the company also announced that 100% of its senior credit facility lenders agreed to reset certain financial covenants over the life of the loans and allow the company to retain all proceeds from the auction of certain surplus properties to pay or settle workers' compensation and bodily injury and property damage ("BIPD") claims.

In addition, the company reported, on a non-GAAP basis, adjusted EBITDA for the first quarter of 2012 of $15.3 million, up from negative adjusted EBITDA of $1.3 million during the comparable period in 2011 (as detailed in the reconciliation below).  On a year-over-year basis, adjusted EBITDA improved $16.6 million, even after taking into consideration approximately $23.0 million of multi-employer pension plan expense that the company incurred in the first quarter of 2012 but not in 2011.

"We are experiencing increased efficiencies at each of our operating companies.  Our employees are responding extremely well to our operating changes to regain a leading position in the LTL industry, and earlier this week, our senior credit facility lenders gave us a unanimous vote of confidence by amending those facilities to increase our liquidity by allowing us to retain the proceeds from the disposition of some excess real estate and increasing our financial flexibility for the foreseeable future.  This is an exciting time at YRCW as our team now has the financial flexibility and the tools to take this business to the next level," stated James Welch, chief executive officer of YRC Worldwide.  "Our plan is to continue building on this positive momentum throughout 2012 with the determination of delivering consistent, high-quality service that is both reliable and cost effective. The feedback we're getting is that our operating companies are providing the service levels our customers expect, and they are rewarding us with increased levels of business as our first quarter results indicate," Welch said.

YRC Freight delivered year-over-year improvement in operating revenues, which increased 8.1% to $789.1 million; tonnage per day increased 3.5%; shipments per day increased 2.8%; revenue per hundredweight increased 3.3%; and revenue per shipment increased 4.0%.

Regional Transportation also delivered year-over-year improvements in operating revenues, which increased 9.8% to $402.0 million; tonnage per day increased 6.0%; shipments per day increased 4.3%; revenue per hundredweight increased 4.5%; and revenue per shipment increased 6.2%.

"These year-over-year core operating improvements show promise and indicate we are on the right path.  However, we are still working to address some outstanding issues related to previous decisions that have affected the pace of our recovery," stated Welch.  "Our workers' compensation claims grew rapidly during the Yellow Transportation/Roadway Express integration. These claims increased our self-insured reserves as the company was not strategic in settling open claims at that time."  Full report...................

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Truck drivers teach safety in Bland County

Because Bland County is home to a major interstate, local drivers are used to weaving through traffic with tractor-trailers. But that doesn’t make it any easier.

If fact, most adults have not learned how to properly drive with trucks along the highway – a detail that has not escaped the American Trucking Association, which is teaching students nationwide how to stay safe around big rigs.

Recently, the ATA’s Share the Road program came to Bland County.

“We want to show you how to share the road safely with a truck so you won’t be so afraid of trucks,” said David Boyer, a road driver for ABF Freight System Inc. in Wytheville.

Boyer was one of three million-mile, accident-free professional truck drivers delivering life-saving safety tips to students at Bland High School. The drivers also visited Rural Retreat High School, George Wythe High School and Fort Chiswell High School.

According to Boyer, 75 percent of all truck-involved fatalities are unintentionally initiated by car drivers.  Full Story............


Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa welcomed news today that YRC Worldwide Inc. (YRCW) has agreed with lenders to reset its agreements on some loans and will be able to retain proceeds from the auction of certain properties.

“This is welcome news for our YRCW members who have had to endure sacrifices for several years,” Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa said. “Those sacrifices, which included conditions for a new management team, are paving the way for the company to get its operations in order. Yesterday’s announcement of support from YRCW’s lenders shows that other key stakeholders also have confidence in this new management team and the business plan they developed. With the financial covenants now reset the company can fully focus on implementing its business plan, which is good for YRCW customers and good for our members.”

Monday, April 30, 2012

YRC Worldwide gets wiggle room from lenders

YRC Worldwide Inc. says its lenders have agreed to reset covenants from a July 2011 credit agreement, staving off the latest concern about the trucker’s financial future.

In a Monday release, the Overland Park-based company said all of its term credit agreement lenders and credit agreement lenders for asset-backed loans agreed to the amendments.

In addition to resetting the loan terms, the lenders will allow YRC to retain all proceeds from the auction of certain surplus property.

If YRC had not been able to secure the changes, its lenders could have forced the company to repay its loans immediately, which the company said it didn’t have the cash to do.  Full Story..........

YRC Worldwide Announces Agreement with 100 Percent of Its Lenders

Unanimous Vote Affirms Resounding Support of the New Management Team's Renewed Focus on LTL Leadership

Agreement Provides Years of Additional Financial Flexibility

YRC Worldwide Inc. today announced that it has reached an agreement with its lenders to reset certain financial covenants over the life of the loans and allow the company to retain all proceeds from the auction of certain surplus properties.  The amendments were supported by 100 percent of its Term Credit Agreement lenders and 100 percent of its ABL Credit Agreement lenders.

James Welch, chief executive officer of YRC Worldwide said, "When YRCW's new leadership team was put in place last year, we refocused the company on its core strengths to position the business as a respected industry leader in the North American less-than-truckload (LTL) shipping industry.  The new leadership team developed a strategy and business plan, including updated forecasts focused on reinvesting in the quality of the service we provide, and we have successfully executed against both our qualitative and quantitative objectives.  To date, we are pleased to have exceeded our forecast and to have reached this agreement with our lenders, which will allow us to continue building on our current momentum and successes."

"Today, YRCW has the financial flexibility needed to support our growth strategies and to continue gaining market share. Thanks to the company's talented and dedicated workforce, comprised of 32,000 of the best freight professionals in the industry, we are achieving operational improvements, increasing profitability and better serving our customers," Welch concluded.

"We appreciate the support of our lenders and believe that these amendments affirm their confidence in our ongoing initiatives, their trust in the leadership and the future of YRCW," said Jamie Pierson, chief financial officer of YRC Worldwide."  Pierson continued, "Over the last several quarters — while strengthening our liquidity position and sharpening our focus on the North American LTL shipping market — we have announced the dispositions of our truckload subsidiary and a significant portion of our excess real estate as well as the divestiture of one of our Chinese joint ventures.  This agreement and unanimous support of all of our senior lenders is a testament not only to what we have done but also to what we are doing.  Now, it is time to return this company to the prominence and pride that it once held as the most revered company in the industry."

YRC Freight Recognized as NASSTRAC 2012 LTL Carrier of the Year

Company Ranks No. 1 in Survey of NASSTRAC Members

The National Shippers Strategic Transportation Council (NASSTRAC) presented its 2012 LTL Carrier of the Year to YRC Freight, a subsidiary of YRC Worldwide Inc. (NASDAQ: YRCW) at its annual Logistics Conference & Expo.

"Since we adopted the new YRC Freight brand in February, we have been focusing on our core LTL business and the fundamentals of superior customer service," said Jeff Rogers, YRC Freight president, who accepted the award on behalf of YRC Freight. "Those efforts are paying off. We appreciate this recognition from such a prestigious organization as NASSTRAC and we plan to be back in the winner's circle next year as we continue improving our network and service."

The annual NASSTRAC awards program recognizes carriers that have demonstrated excellence and also helps shippers identify the "best of the best" in carrier performance and value.

Through an online survey, NASSTRAC members ranked carriers on a four-point scale in the following five key areas: (1) customer service; (2) operational excellence; (3) delivery flexibility, billing accuracy and claims resolution; (4) business relationship effectiveness; and (5) leadership in technology. This year, a record number of members participated in the survey.

In the national LTL category, YRC Freight replaced ABF Freight System, the winner in 2010 and 2011. Between 2003 and 2009, the top-ranked national carrier in the survey was Roadway.

"NASSTRAC's goal through this program is to encourage high performance by carriers through this shipper-recognition program," said Eric Morley, NASSTRAC chairman. "As a shipper-based association we leverage this national awards program to continuously encourage performance excellence in various market segments of transportation. Shippers and carriers alike see this to be a very credible program through which appropriate industry recognition is given."

Rick Mathews, senior vice president of sales and marketing, customer service and customer support at YRC Freight, said the award reflects the efforts and professionalism of employees throughout the company and is evidence that YRC Freight's strategy is working.

"What's really significant is that we've received this recognition from an independent organization based on the opinions of our customers," Mathews said. "This is a very positive step in the right direction and shows our customers that we are deserving of their trust and business."

NASSTRAC has been providing education and advocacy for shippers and carriers since 1952.