Truck companies are the cornerstone of the transportation industry in the US. They provide invaluable logistics services that are a vital component of thousands of businesses in the country.
Large trucks carry millions of goods across the nation every day. Major companies earn billions in revenues from their logistics operation. In this article, we will take a look at the ten largest truck companies operating in the US, and also how they contribute to the economy.
- Knight-Swift Transportation – The Phoenix, AZ-based company, Knight-Swift Transportation has a fleet of more than 18,000 units. Some of the trucks are owned by the company while others are owner operated. Flight terminals of the company are located in major traffic lanes and freight centers in the US and Mexico. The company provides ‘one-stop shopping’ services through a range of trucks. The company’s revenue for 2018 amounted to $5.34 billion.
- YRC Worldwide – YRC Worldwide is another big trucking company in the US. Based in Oklahoma City, the company has maintained a dominant position in the American market for decades. The company for originally formed as a taxi and bus company named Yellow Roadway Corporation in 1924. Later, the company had merged with leading trucking companies in the US and Canada Roadway and Reimer Express, respectively. At present, the trucking company specializes in less than truckload freight. The company’s had net revenues in 2018 amounted to $5.09 billion.
- J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. – J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. was one of the first large US truck corporations that had adopted the ‘container trucking’ approach whereby the cargo went directly to trucks from trains and ships. The large trucking company offers custom freight transportation equipment and logistical expertise meeting the needs of Fortune 500 companies. Annual revenue of the company in 2018 was $8.615 billion.
- XPO Logistics – Formerly known as Con-Way Freight, XPO Logistics has been in the trucking businesses since nearly a century. The company was founded as Consolidated Truck Lines in 1929 serving small businesses. Based in Portland, OR, the company today operates in more than 21 countries in five continents. The multinational company had merged with XPO logistics. Total global revenues of the company in 2018 amounted to $17.279 billion.
- Schneider National – Schneider National is another renowned US trucking company that has been in business since 1935. The company is the leading truck-load freight company in the US with offices located in the US, Canada, Mexico, and Europe. Revenues of the company in 2018 had amounted to $4.4 billion in 2018.
- Landstar System – Landstar System is one of the largest companies in the US. The company has a network of independent agents that allows it local and global reach. The network is unmatched consisting of more than 16,000 trailers, 10,000 owners operated trucks and 59,000 other capacity vehicles. The company hauls heavy and specialized items across the US and abroad. The company’s revenue in 2018 amounted to $2.243 billion.
- Werner Enterprises – Werner Inc. was established in 1956 as a freight logistics company. During the initial public offering of the company in 1986, the company had only 630 trucks. Today the company has a presence not just in the US but all over the world. At the moment, the company’s fleet includes 24,000 trailers, 7,800 tractors, and about 13,000 independent agents. It deals with a truck brokerage, intermodal transport, and freight management. The company’s revenue in 2018 was $1.853 billion.
- US Xpress Enterprises – US Express is another great company in the US. By asset-based truckload, the company is the fifth largest in the US. Founded in 1986, the company began with a fleet of just 48 tucks. Today there are more than 15,500 trailers and 7,000 tractors providing logistics services to major businesses in the US. Annual revenue of the company in 2018 amounted to $1.562 billion.
- Daseke – Daseke is a Texas-based logistics company that specializes in freight market in North America. The company is one of the biggest flatbed trucking companies with a fleet consisting of more than 13,000 specialized trailers and 6,000 tractors. The company’s revenue for FY 2018 was $1.345 billion.
- CRST International – Headquartered in Iowa, CRST International is another large trucking company with revenues of was $1.583 billion in 2018. The company is one of the leading transport companies that have been at the pulse of the trucking industry since 1955.
Amazon Joining the Fight
In October of 2019, Amazon branded semis started hitting the road (manufactured by Volvo and Kenworth), which is quite different from their branded trailers. This is a full entry into the truck market. If Amazon chooses to continue it’s growth of private tractor trailers, it may become one of the largest trucking companies in the US simply because of it’s behemoth size and market share. As Amazon expands it’s carrier network to a brokerage model, it could also offer freight rates that are nearly 30% less than the market rate due to its economies of scale (source).
Update December 8, 2021: Amazon Freight Partners (AFP) now owns or leases roughly 85 North American freight airplanes, and Amazon’s logistics unit has bought 1,395 Amazon-branded big-rig tractors to pull trailers of goods in the United States (Source: Reuters).
Update Feb 2, 2023: Tesla recently delivered 36 electric heavy duty Tesla Semis to Pepsico and plans to purchase another 70 in 2023 (Source: NBC).
Contribution of Trucking Companies to the US Economy
The above are just some of the biggest trucking companies in the US. The companies play a major role in the economy making goods available to the end users. The companies are always looking for new ways to expand the business with mergers and consolidations.
While some large corporations such as Walmart have started their own logistics operations, the majority of the businesses in the US continue to rely on large truck companies and they are a critical part of their supply chains. The biggest truck companies are riding the wave of increasing revenues in 2019. Despite the rise in fuel oil prices, the companies continue to earn high profits due to the high demand for logistics in the US. The trucking companies provide employment to a large number of individuals. At present, there are 1.7 million heavy-duty trucks and tractors jobs in the US. Nearly 7.4 million individuals are associated with the industry.
Future Outlook of the Trucking Industry
Despite the increase in rail and intermodal transport services, trucks continue to move the majority of goods and materials across the US. The industry will continue to grow over the years ahead with increasing demand by the corporate sector.
Truck driving continues to remain an attractive way to earn a living for many Americans. Unlike tech jobs, a college degree is not required to become a truck driver which attracts millions to this profession. While employees in other industries are losing jobs due to offshoring and automation, employees in the trucking industry have been, up until now, immune to the threat. However, recent advances in driverless trucks can pose a threat to the jobs of millions of Americans in the US. We will always need trucks to transport goods across the US, but the future of the trucking industry is almost certainly headed to autonomous drivers.
Finding a Lawyer When in a Truck Accident
TruckAccidentAttorneyNetwork.org is a resource for people when they were in a collision with a tractor trailer. Our listed truck accident lawyers also represent families of people who were fatally injured and are pursuing a wrongful death claim. Many of our listed attorneys also represent injured truck drivers and their families when a serious collision has impacted their lives and ability to make a living.
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