CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) — Richmond, Virginia-based Estes Express confirmed a Bloomberg report that it is bidding- $1.3 billion to buy trucking terminals belonging to bankrupt Yellow Corp, including a key terminal in Carlisle near the intersection of Interstate 81 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
Why is that terminal so attractive?
“You could argue that the intersection of 76 [the Turnpike] and 81 is the best intersection in the northeast, and it’s certainly one of the best,” said Noël Perry, a Cornwall (Lebanon County)-based principal with Transport Futures.
And why might Estes be particularly interested in Yellow’s terminals rather than other company assets?
“The prime value of Yellow remains in its terminals because they are expensive to build and hard to locate,” Perry said.
In the less-than-truckload — or “LTL” end — of the trucking industry, partial truckloads of goods are consolidated at terminals onto full trailers for maximum efficiency.
“A lot of people do not want trucking facilities in their backyard,” explained Avery Vise, the chief trucking analyst for FTR Transport Intelligence. “So facilities that are already built and already in place and already in operation are very valuable, because it is extraordinarily difficult to get zoning approval in a lot of cases to have new ones built. So there is a very scarce resource.”
Vise said that’s different from trucks and trailers, which are widely available — perhaps even more widely available than usual right now, precisely because Yellow is liquidating itself.
“As a proud member of the transportation industry, Estes felt it was important to try to bring a proposal to the Yellow bankruptcy estate and its creditors that would add some value for the benefit of all case constituents and reduce some of the uncertainty surrounding this bankruptcy process,” an Estes spokesperson told abc27 News in a statement. Still, the company cautioned, “we know the people in this space and truly want to help if we can, but much needs to play out in this case.”