By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor, Logistics Management, October 8, 2018
Fremont, Calif.-based third-party logistics (3PL) services provider RK Logistics Group recently announced it has opened up a freight transportation brokerage operation with Mode Transportation.
Mode is an agent-based transportation solutions provider that is differentiated by customer-specific expertise, offerings across all modes of freight transportation and leading edge technology and analytics. Last month, Mode was sold by its owner, Chicago-based Hub Group, to an affiliate of global private investment firm, York Capital Management, for roughly $238.5 million.
RK officials said that the new entity will be called RK Mode LLC and will offer new capabilities for local, regional, and national truckload, less-than-truckload, intermodal, ocean, parcel and integrated transportation services. And it added that RKG Mode will function as an independent agent of Mode Transportation, providing a sophisticated technology platform, as well as access to what it described as one of the largest networks for domestic and global transportation capacity in the United States.
RK Logistics Group President Rock Magnan told LM there were various factors behind this partnership.
“RK has been in the truckload business since 1983, utilizing our own fleet, dedicated owner operators and outside trucks sourced through our own broker operation,” he said. “In the current truckload environment with a shortage of drivers, our traditional truckload partners have been unable to provide trucks to service our customers on a consistent basis because they are using their equipment and drivers to cover their own customer loads. RK needed a better solution for our customers without having to increase the size of our own fleet.”
As for what Mode brings to the table, Magnan explained that Mode provides an ideal solution, given its large network of over-the-road trucks, as well as being uniquely positioned to provide intermodal truckload service where it is a viable option for its customers.
He also pointed to Mode’s sophisticated IT platform for RK to manage its truckload business, and he cited Mode’s operations teams’ ability to track and trace loads 24×7, which provides an enhanced level of service to RK’s relatively small family owned business.
“RK has a strong sales team with many years of experience and an established customer following in Northern California,” he said. “A merger of Mode’s operational capabilities with our strong sales and customer service creates a winning option for our customers.”
As for its own asset-based operations, Magnan said the company has a small fleet servicing Northern California, noting that RK focused its company fleet on higher margin specialty equipment like drop deck flatbed and high cube trailers. RK also has a relationship with JR Transportation to provide dedicated fleet services, LTL and local truckload capabilities to support its group of dedicated owner operators.
“We are excited to have RKG Mode join the Mode Transportation family,” Jim Damman, President and CEO of Mode Transportation said in a statement. “The company has a tremendous reputation for outstanding service. We are looking forward to working with them.”