Frozen Food Express posts smaller 1Q net loss

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Frozen Food Express Industries Inc. on Tuesday, May 1, announced total operating revenue for the first quarter of 2012 ended March 31 decreased 4.5 percent to $87.9 million compared to $92.1 million in the same period of 2011. Total operating revenue, net of fuel surcharges, decreased 4.5 percent to $70.1 million compared to $73.4 million. Net loss decreased to $5.6 million compared to a $7.9 million loss.

“Excluding revenue from dry freight services, our revenue showed a solid 4.3 percent improvement from the same period last year,” said Russell Stubbs, president and chief executive officer of the Dallas-based company. “While year-over-year comparisons in our truckload services are made difficult by our decision to exit the dry van services last year, revenue per truckload mile increased 7.8 percent during the first quarter of 2012, and we expect to realize favorable rate increases for the balance of the year.”

Stubbs said both pricing and demand for the company’s less-than-truckload services continued to improve during the first quarter when compared to the same period last year. “As a result, our LTL revenue increased 8.0 percent during the quarter,” he said. “This marks the strongest first-quarter performance in our LTL business in three years, and we anticipate continued improvement throughout the remainder of the year.”

Stubbs said Frozen Food Express expects that quarterly results will continue to improve throughout the year. “While we still have progress to make, during the first quarter we began to see the positive effects of our strategic plan,” he said. “We achieved cost savings from our younger and more fuel-efficient fleet. We improved yields and grew volumes in our temperature control services. Additionally, we saw the first meaningful revenue contribution from our recently introduced water transportation services. Overall, the first quarter marked a solid start to 2012 and was consistent with our plan to restore profitably during this year.”