Fifteen percent of fleets are considering leaving the industry in the next six months if volumes do not increase, according to the recent Third Quarter 2011 Transport Capital Partners (TCP) Business Expectations Survey. The report noted that 20% of fleets under $25 million in revenue and 11.8% of fleets over $25 million said they would give consideration to leaving in six months. The number of carriers thinking about selling in the next 18 months rose slightly from 25 to 28%. It is the highest percentage of carriers interested in selling long term since TCP began the survey in 2009.
“A dichotomy still remains in our industry,” said Lana Batts, TCP partner. “Even with carriers seeing more freight volumes, they are still under cost pressure from most inputs [fuel, regulations, equipment and drivers]. In essence, it just isn't any fun anymore. The desire to leave the industry will significantly change the face of the industry as well as the business models that depend upon smaller carriers providing hard assets.”
“Ironically, even though smaller fleets are more optimistic about volumes over the next 12 months [54% as opposed to 38%],” added Richard Mikes, TCP partner, “they still indicate that they are more serious about leaving the industry.”