A Connecticut company that acquired Turbo Logistics in late October has begun exploring possible tax incentives that, if agreed upon with Georgia officials, could result in a near tripling of the work force at the company’s Gainesville operation.
“We have about 150 (employees) there now. We could use our proprietary recruiting techniques and training programs to go out and hire another 250,” said Bradley Jacobs, chairman and chief executive officer of XPO Logistics.
XPO, a third-party provider of transportation logistics services, acquired the operating assets of Turbo, the freight brokerage division of Ozburn-Hessey Logistics, for $50 million, the company announced Oct. 25.
Founded in 1984, Turbo Logistics serves more than 600 customers through its location at 2419 W. Park Drive in Gainesville, as well as operations in Reno, Nev., Chicago and Dallas.
“We are (also) comparing the options in Charlotte, where we have a base business, and Turbo’s office in Reno, and based on the economic assistance packages that can be put on the table, we plan to put resources in scaling up the operations,” Jacobs said during a phone interview last week.
The Gainesville location has a 40,000-square-foot building that “can hold 400 people,” Jacobs said.
Discussions with Georgia have just started, “but we’re trying to move it along on a fast track,” he said. “The sooner the better (for a resolution). We have all the resources in place to grow Gainesville substantially, making it nearly three times the size it is now.”
J. Jeffrey Battle, vice president for business development in Gainesville, said he believes the acquisition “will allow us to increase our level of service and expand our offerings in terms of truck capacity to our current customer base.
“Additionally, through current XPO resources and anticipated growth, we will be able to greatly expand our customer base,” he added. “We are hopeful that the state of Georgia will offer incentives to expand new job opportunities for our Gainesville office.”
Jacobs said XPO was drawn to Turbo in the first place because of its experience and “great reputation in the transportation business.”
“Turbo has deep relationships with a large number of important customers,” he added. “Turbo is known for giving great service and maintaining long-term relationships with customers.
“And the quality of people ... is pretty high, and we’re looking at adding new sales people and giving them a shot at creating a lucrative career for themselves.”
At the time of the acquisition, Jacobs released a statement saying that Turbo has “a strong carrier network and deep relationships in the retail, manufacturing and food and beverage sectors.
“We’re on track or ahead of schedule with every major component of our growth strategy: acquisitions, cold starts and the optimization of our operations. With the acquisition of Turbo, we’re fast approaching the $500 million revenue run rate we targeted for year-end.”
Tim Evans, the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce’s vice president for economic development, said, “We’ve met with the management team locally and some of the XPO officials, and we welcome them and will continue to support them as an existing business.”