GE helps Shipper’s Transport execs buy company

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Two Shipper’s Transport executives have announced their purchase of the Nashville, Tenn.-based truckload carrier from its founding family owners, with financing provided by GE’s Trailer Fleet Services business in Wayne, Pa. The new owners are Chief Financial Officer Marc Stewart and Chief Operations Officer Jere Caplenor. Terms of the deal, which also includes fleetwide installation of GE’s VeriWise trailer-tracking technology, were not disclosed.

Shipper’s Transport was founded in Texas in 1991 by the late Charles Hulshof, and has facilities in Nashville; El Paso, Texas; and Pharr, Texas. Its 500 employees serve a variety of customers with a fleet of 240 tractors and more than 700 trailers. Following the death of Hulshof in 2001, the company had continued under the family’s ownership. Earlier this year, Stewart and Caplenor worked with the family to find a way to purchase the company.

“We had developed a good relationship with GE over the years, and knew they had the resources and type of financial product we needed to make this happen,” Stewart says. “As we worked through the transaction, both Jere and I were impressed with their understanding of our industry, and our shared desire to bring the very best outcome to our employees and our customers.”

With “just-in-time” delivery a key requirement for many Shipper’s Transport customers, Stewart and Caplenor also looked to GE’s asset intelligence product, VeriWise, to help them pinpoint the location of trailer shipments, particularly untethered ones. VeriWise is designed to help trucking firms monitor, manage and optimize their assets.

“Our associates have worked hard to build Shipper’s Transport into a company that understands how to use technology and precise operational execution to benefit our customers,” Caplenor says. “Our goal now as owners is to strengthen the close relationships the Hulshof family developed with our customers through providing even greater value as a transportation provider.”

Stewart joined Shipper’s Transport in 1994 when the company was still based in El Paso; Caplenor, who joined in 1993, initially was involved in the operations department, and he became vice president of sales and marketing in 1994.