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GlobalTranz acquires Circle 8 Logistics

(Photo: Circle 8 Logistics)

GlobalTranz (GTZ) announced this morning that it acquired Circle 8 Logistics, a Chicago-based third-party logistics provider brokering truckload, flatbed, intermodal, temperature-controlled, and less-than-truckload (LTL) capacity. Circle 8 is GlobalTranz’s ninth acquisition since its January 2017 buying spree began, a roll-up strategy that has pushed GTZ’s annual gross revenue above  $1.5 billion. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Circle 8 Logistics reported $100.6 million in 2017 revenue to, a list of the fastest-growing companies in the United States. Co-CEOs Mike Lewis and Ryan Phillips founded Circle 8 in 2001.

“Circle 8 has a strong history of providing its customers with superior services and logistics solutions,” said Renee Krug, chief executive officer of GlobalTranz. “Circle 8 has combined a focus on people, processes and technology to drive growth via unique solutions for its customers and strong carrier partnerships. The combination will further accelerate our growth and market leadership in the 3PL [third-party logistics] industry,” added Krug.

The purchase of Circle 8 is GlobalTranz’s third acquisition since the private equity firm The Jordan Company bought GTZ last summer. Prior to Circle 8, GlobalTranz bought AFN Logistics, a large Chicago-based brokerage, and SynchOne, an LTL division of a North Carolina-based freight brokerage.

“GlobalTranz is clearly executing on its strategy of driving growth both organically and via complementary, accretive acquisitions,” said Bob Farrell, executive chairman of GlobalTranz, in a statement. “Our unique hybrid combination of the best independent freight agents in the industry with our strong direct channels is a clear differentiator. Circle 8 will further enhance our channels to market.”

The GlobalTranz/Circle 8 deal continues a years-long trend of consolidation in the 3PL space. GlobalTranz’s rapid organic and acquisitive growth, which, according to one industry source, is “blowing its plan out of the water,” has made the company significantly larger than it was just nine months ago when Jordan acquired it.

John Paul Hampstead

John Paul conducts research on multimodal freight markets and holds a Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Michigan. Prior to building a research team at FreightWaves, JP spent two years on the editorial side covering trucking markets, freight brokerage, and M&A.