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Brokerage M&A continues: Cheema adds Walker Logistics to portfolio

Tuck-in deal the latest in a flurry of activity

Brokerages remain hot M&A targets (Photo: Cheema Freightlines)

Cheema Logistics announced the acquisition of 3PL provider Walker Logistics on Tuesday.

Founded in 2003, Missoula, Montana-based Walker Logistics brokers dry van, flatbed, refrigerated, expedited and partial truckloads in the U.S. and Canada through a network of approved motor carriers. The group also provides less-than-truckload brokerage services.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“We are thrilled to have added the capabilities, customers and all employees of Walker Logistics to the Cheema family,” said Harman Cheema, founder and CEO of Cheema Freightlines, the asset-based parent of Cheema Logistics. “We look forward to expanding our logistics network and providing Walker’s customers with added third-party and asset-backed solutions.”

In addition to its logistics unit, Sumner, Washington-based Cheema Freightlines is a family-owned carrier hauling dry van TL freight mostly along the Interstate 5 corridor. It also provides yard management as well as dedicated and intermodal services. The 15-year-old carrier operates a fleet of more than 325 tractors and 1,100 trailers.

Brokerage M&A has seen several high-profile deals in recent weeks. 

ArcBest (NASDAQ: ARCB) announced Wednesday it was acquiring Chicago-based TL broker MoLo Solutions in a deal ranging between $235 million and potentially more than $450 million. Echo Global Logistics (NASDAQ: ECHO) was taken private in a $1.3 billion deal in early September, and Uber Freight (NYSE: UBER) acquired Transplace in July for $2.25 billion.

“Knowing Harman for over seven years, I am confident our customers will be able to take advantage of Cheema’s growing network, services and technology,” said Michael Walker, founder and president of Walker Logistics. “I believe Cheema will provide a great home to our employees and continue to provide outstanding service to Walker Logistics’ customers.”

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Todd Maiden

Based in Richmond, VA, Todd is the finance editor at FreightWaves. Prior to joining FreightWaves, he covered the TLs, LTLs, railroads and brokers for RBC Capital Markets and BB&T Capital Markets. Todd began his career in banking and finance before moving over to transportation equity research where he provided stock recommendations for publicly traded transportation companies.