Werner strikes deal for brokerage ReedTMS Logistics

Img 1717 Headshot
Updated Nov 8, 2022
Reed TMS building
Werner Enterprises acquired 100% of the equity interests of
Reed Transport Services, Inc. and RTS-TMS, Inc., doing business as ReedTMS Logistics, based in Tampa, Florida, for $112.4 million.

Werner Enterprises (CCJ Top 250, No. 13) is acquiring Tampa, Florida-based ReedTMS Logistics, an asset-light logistics provider and truckload carrier that offers a suite of freight brokerage and truckload solutions, for $112.4 million.

Reed's brokerage network, which accounts for 90% of the company's revenue, includes 19,000 active carriers and 70,000 approved carriers. The company serves more than 800 customers, but two-thirds of its business comes from the food and beverage industries. 

ReedTMS will operate as a standalone business unit within Werner, and will report to the Werner Logistics segment. Its truckload business will report to Werner's Dedicated business unit with its Truckload Transportation Services segment.

"ReedTMS will elevate our logistics portfolio with new customers, by expanding and diversifying our industry verticals," said Werner Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Derek Leathers, adding that the acquisition brings Werner's brokerage business to roughly 50% contract. "Our brokerage business becomes significantly more relevant overnight."

From 2020 through 2021, brokerages were booming, but have been a tough place to do business with the spot market rates cratering.

"One of the things that really excited us about ReedTMS is their agility," Leathers said, "their ability to adapt to [market] changes is very impressive.”

ReedTMS Logistics CEO Jason Reed said partnering with Werner will enable the company "to achieve key goals, including creating broader opportunities for our associates, expanding our service capabilities for our customers and helping us continue our quest to leverage best in class technology solutions for our associates, customers, suppliers and other stakeholders.”

Werner in October acquired Milan, Indiana-based truckload carrier Baylor Trucking – it's first acquisition since 2021, when it acquired an 80% equity ownership stake in Pennsylvania-based regional hauler ECM Transport Group for $142.4 million (Werner has an option to buy the remaining 20% of the company after five years), and final-mile carrier Nehds Logistics for $64 million. Prior to last year, Werner hadn't made an acquisition in its 60-plus year history. 

“We feel really good about the four acquisitions that we’ve made and how they fit into the portfolio,” Leathers added. “We’re not looking to just become a rollup company and we’re not going to stray from our stated objective, which is to always grow and invest organically in this business first and foremost. At the same time, when the right opportunities come along and you see something that can not only make us better but make us better together... we’re going to take it serious.”

There have been 26 deals among CCJ's Top 250 for-hire carriers since the beginning of June, and 31 Top 250 fleets have struck 34 deals this year.