Canada trucking acquisition targets cross-border market

canada-us borderCanada’s Kriska Transportation Group is buying its second motor carrier in two months, TransPro Freight Systems in Milton, Ontario, as it pursues cross-border shipping business.

The deal, expected to be completed this month, follows Kriska’s acquisition of JMF Transport (1992), Valcourt, Quebec, in October. Both TransPro and JMF are truckload carriers.

Acquiring truckload carriers is part of Kriska’s mission. Kriska Transportation Group was founded last year by Canada trucking operators Kriska Holdings and Mullen Group to take advantage of “significant consolidation” in the truckload market of Eastern Canada.

That consolidation has proceeded this year, with companies such as Dicom Transportation Group of Montrealmaking several acquisitions in Canada and the U.S. Canada’s largest trucking operator, TransForce, expanded in the U.S. by acquiring Hazen Final Mile.

Kriska Transportation hasn’t acquired a U.S. fleet, but all of its businesses haul freight across the border. And like Dicom and TransForce, Kriska Transportation or KTG operates a network of independent subsidiaries, starting with Mill Creek Motor Freight and Kriska Holdings.

Mullen provided its interest in Mill Creek Motor Freight in return for a 30 percent stake in Kriska Transportation. Mullen also owns the new company’s assets and leases them to KTG.

The new business “provides Mullen Group shareholders with the best opportunity to participate in the industry consolidation that we expect to occur in the Ontario trucking sector,” Mullen Group Chairman, President and CEO Murray K. Mullen said in September 2014.

KTG is led by President and CEO Mark Seymour, who had been CEO of Kriska Holdings. The company is based in Prescott, Ontario, between Kingston and Montreal on the St. Lawrence River. The company specializes in overnight service between Quebec and Windsor, Ontario and cross-border service linking Eastern Canada and the U.S. Midwest, Northeast and Southeast.

“We have been actively looking at acquisitions in Eastern Canada that fit our model of safe, well-managed and financially disciplined companies,” Seymour said in a statement.

With TransPro’s 110 tractors and 300 trailers, KTG will operate a fleet of 645 tractors, 1,950 trailers and employ or contract 900 people, including owner-operators.

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