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Estes Express CEO invests in Cargo Chief, joins board

Head of big LTL carrier makes another investment foray in digital freight-matching space

Estes' CEO invests in Cargo Chief, joins its board (Photo: Jim Allen/FreightWaves

Digital freight-matching company Cargo Chief said Thursday that Rob W. Estes Jr., president and CEO of LTL carrier Estes Express Lines, has invested in Cargo Chief and has joined the board of directors of the Millbrae, California-based company. The amount of Estes’ investment was not disclosed.

Estes’ company, based in Richmond, Virginia, is the nation’s fifth-largest LTL carrier and North America’s largest privately held LTL operator. The family-owned trucker was founded in 1931 by Estes’ grandfather, W.W. Estes.

Estes’ investment is passive in nature, meaning he will not take an active role in Cargo Chief’s day-to-day operations. 

This is not Estes’ first investment foray in the digital freight-matching segment. He had been a passive investor in Cargomatic, a Long Beach, California-based company that matches shippers with capacity in the short-haul truckload and LTL markets. It is unclear if Estes is still an investor in the company.

“Amid unprecedented demand, transportation and logistics providers are looking for ways to more efficiently book freight and move loads to help their customers and supply chains recover. The latest technology advancements in digital freight matching, capacity procurement and pricing tools make this possible,” Estes said in a statement.


Mark Solomon

Formerly the Executive Editor at DC Velocity, Mark Solomon joined FreightWaves as Managing Editor of Freight Markets. Solomon began his journalistic career in 1982 at Traffic World magazine, ran his own public relations firm (Media Based Solutions) from 1994 to 2008, and has been at DC Velocity since then. Over the course of his career, Solomon has covered nearly the whole gamut of the transportation and logistics industry, including trucking, railroads, maritime, 3PLs, and regulatory issues. Solomon witnessed and narrated the rise of Amazon and XPO Logistics and the shift of the U.S. Postal Service from a mail-focused service to parcel, as well as the exponential, e-commerce-driven growth of warehouse square footage and omnichannel fulfillment.