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November 2, 2011 3:00 PM, EDT

Frozen Food Express Sets Non-Driving Staff Cuts to Reduce Costs

Says Equipment Sale to Celadon Ahead of Schedule

Frozen Food Express Industries said Tuesday it will reduce its non-driving employee payroll by about 12%, to cut costs, and that a planned equipment sale was ahead of schedule.

The refrigerated carrier said it would take a charge of about $400,000 in the fourth quarter and that the action would save it about $500,000 annually.

FFE on Friday reported a third-quarter loss of $13.7 million, and the company said last month that it plans to sell more than 400 dry vans and almost 300 tractors to truckload carrier Celadon Group.

It said it expects to receive about $21.9 million in cash in the fourth quarter and January from the equipment sale.

“The reduction, although regrettable, had to be made at this time as the sale of equipment was conducted much quicker than we expected,” CEO Russell Stubbs said in a statement.

Frozen Food Express is ranked No. 57 on the Transport Topics 100 listing of U.S. and Canadian for-hire carriers, and is the fifth largest refrigerated carrier.