When Mark DiBlasi came on board as president and chief executive officer of Roadrunner Transportation Systems Inc. in 2006, his goal was to add significantly to its service offerings to meet all of its customers’ transportation needs. And with the company’s latest acquisitions, he has accomplished his goal.
In 2014, Cudahy-based Roadrunner made four acquisitions totaling $235 million, one of which became the final piece in its quest to become a full service transportation and logistics services provider. But that doesn’t mean it will stop making complementary acquisitions, DiBlasi said.
Since 2005, Roadrunner has made 32 acquisitions. During that time, DiBlasi has grown its revenue from about $150 million to almost $1.9 billion, both through acquisitions and through organic growth. Through November, the company had added 1,228 employees, 885 of whom were through acquisitions.
In recognition of that growth, DiBlasi has been named the BizTimes Best in Business CEO of the Year for 2014.
The acquisition of Active Aero Group in September added the company’s final service offering, expedited shipping. Roadrunner is now an airline, with a fleet of 10 planes for expedited shipping.
The company now offers expedited, less-than-truckload, truckload, intermodal, warehousing and consolidation, transportation management and international shipping.
“We feel like we have the platform built. Now it’s a matter of building scale and density,” DiBlasi said. “In transportation, the more density you have translates into improved margin.”
DiBlasi, who previously served as vice president-southern division at FedEx Ground Inc., is constantly reviewing new acquisition opportunities.
“We have developed a strong reputation in transportation M&A,” he said. “In fact, today I’ve gotten three emails alone from companies that want us to look at them.”
The executive has high expectations for companies he is evaluating and acquiring.
“We expect companies to grow double digits, especially once we acquire them,” DiBlasi said. Also important are cultural fit and a strong management team.
DiBlasi also has high standards for his management team, which he keeps lean. This year, he created division presidents and a chief operating officer to keep up with the growth. There are now seven members of the executive suite.
“The smaller the group, the more we’re all in tune with the mission and the vision of the company going forward,” he said. “I give a lot of freedom to my key executives. We’ve been very successful in bringing on really good personnel, and I think that’s behind the success of the company.”