Maple Leaf Motoring is a weekly rundown of developments in the world of Canadian transportation. This week: Previewing TFI’s earnings, GFL files for IPO and Canadian Trucking Alliance releases infrastructure priorities.
When Canada’s largest transportation and logistics company, TFI International (TSX:TFI), reports second-quarter earnings on July 25, analysts will likely focus on the performance of its core truckload business and signs that a U.S. courier acquisition is boosting revenues.
Analysts estimate that TFI will earn C$1.05 per share on C$1.36 billion of revenue (the Canadian dollar equals US$0.76), according to Yahoo Finance. While those figures suggest a 3 percent increase in revenue and a 6 percent increase in profits, TFI beat earnings estimates in the last four quarters.
TFI reported a 33 percent increase in profits during the first quarter of 2019, even as revenue increased by just 3 percent compared to the first quarter of 2018. In part, the strong performance on the bottom line in weaker market conditions reflected improved operating ratios.
CEO Alain Bedard told analysts in April that the company was focusing on improving operating ratios of its U.S. truckload units, including CFI and Transport America, to push them below 90 percent, in line with their Canadian counterparts.
Continued improvement in operating ratios combined with increases of TFI’s truckload rates in the U.S. by 3 to 6 percent could yield good results from its U.S. truckload business.
Second-quarter results will offer some insight into how TFI is handing the acquisition of assets of bankrupt courier BeavEx. Bedard told analysts that the deal would give TFI a “shot in the arm” to the tune of US$100 million in revenue per year, but it’s unclear how quickly that will happen.
Revenue from TFI’s logistics and final-mile units dropped by 5 percent in the first quarter of 2019, to C$224 million. These businesses account for about 20 percent of the company’s revenue. Weakness came largely from those U.S. units, dominated by TFI’s TForce businesses.
TFI’s TForce units are absorbing BeavEx business. On July 15, TFI announced that the head of its Canadian TForce final-mile operation, Kal Atwal, would also oversee the U.S. counterparts.
GFL Environmental files for IPO
The company plans to list on the Toronto Stock Exchange and a yet-to-be-named U.S. exchange, according to documents filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on July 19.
Based in Toronto, GFl operates in Canada and 20 U.S. states. It offers comprehensive solid- and liquid-waste services.
The company has Canada’s 14th largest for-hire trucking fleet, with 2,355 trucks and 170 tractors, according to Today’s Trucking.
Canadian Trucking Alliance releases infrastructure priorities list
The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA), along with its provincial partners, released its annual list of road infrastructure priorities.
The CTA identified projects across Canada that would impact the trucking industry.
“The CTA and our provincial trucking association partners are hopeful that the new 2019-2020 list will once again have a strong impact on government infrastructure funding priorities,” said CTA director for policy affairs Jonathan Blackham in a statement.
The projects include expanding Highway 401 in the Greater Toronto Area and Route 185, linking New Brunswick and Quebec. The CTA estimates that twinning highway 185 could add C$1 billion to C$1.78 billion to Canada’s GDP.