Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, August 10, 1998

Quast Transfer sold to Vitran Corporation

By MAGGIE SCHUETTE-VOSS

Quast Transfer, Inc. of Winsted has been sold to Vitran Corporation based in Toronto, Canada.

Quast, with its main office in Winsted, made the announcement to its employees Tuesday.

Company owner and President Randy Quast said the sale will close in early September.

According to Quast, Vitran owns the Overland trucking company, based in Indianapolis, Ind. The companies will merge and will be known as Overland/Quast.

The terminal in Winsted will not close, Quast said, although some administrative positions that duplicate with Overland will be eliminated, and the home office for Overland/Quast will be in Indianapolis.

"The intent is not to close anything. The biggest obstacle will be to hire more people to fill positions in the expanded service area," he said.

The customer service department will remain in Winsted and will be expanded, Quast said.

"We have about 20 people that field calls from our customers and Overland was impressed with our customer service department," he said.

Quast said he thought the Winsted terminal will probably double in size. "This is a real growth opportunity."

Quast said he was contacted by Vitran several months ago, and was at first cold to the idea of selling the company.

"But then, as we started looking at it more, it started to make sense," he said.

"Our customers were telling us to expand to the east, Overland wanted to expand to the west. Overland's western boundary is our eastern boundary."

The merger, Quast said, made sense.

By selling to Vitran, Quast Transfer did not have to come up with a large capital outlay to open terminals where a successful company is operating.

"This is exciting news for Quast. We can now do in six months what would have taken five years," he said. "Both companies are profitable. This is not a weak company being taken over by a strong one," he said.

Quast Transfer currently has 28 terminals/service centers and covers nine states. It employs 650 people and has revenues of $55 million.

The combined companies will cover 22 states and have 65 service centers. It will employ 1,350 people and have about $170 million in revenue.

Quast said Vitran's goal is to acquire four to five union-free trucking companies and to cover the entire United States.


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