$2 Million Michigan Grant Helps Fifth Wheel Freight Expand

3PL Chooses West Michigan Expansion Over Options in Other States
Artist rendering of new Fifth Wheel Freight offices
An artist's rendering of what the new Fifth Wheel Freight offices will look like in Michigan. (Fifth Wheel Freight)

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Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer recently touted a $2 million grant to Fifth Wheel Freight as strengthening the state’s supply chain network, with economic development funds supporting the third-party logistics and transportation provider’s plan to establish its headquarters there.

“We will continue competing against other states and nations to bring projects home to Michigan, creating good-paying, high-skills jobs for our residents,” Whitmer said. “Together, we will keep getting things done to build on our economic momentum and deliver on the priorities that make a real difference in people’s lives so anyone can ‘make it’ in Michigan.”

The Michigan Economic Development Corp. noted that Fifth Wheel Freight was weighing whether to open a flagship headquarters in Michigan or opt to create satellite offices in Indiana, Ohio and Tennessee. The company offers less-than-truckload and full-truckload shipping, with growing proficiencies in intermodal, drayage and domestic and international ground and air freight services.

Joshua Brawley, president of Fifth Wheel Freight, told Transport Topics that the grant from the Michigan Strategic Fund enables the company to take a significant step forward in creating meaningful employment opportunities in West Michigan. It will expand its current workforce from 157 employees to 352 jobs within the first three years of receiving the performance-based grant.

“These roles aren’t just numbers,” Brawley said. “They represent real people embarking on career paths in sales, operations, tech, and various other aspects of our business. We’re focused on empowering individuals, providing training, and fostering a workplace culture where everyone can thrive.”

The company’s expansion project is expected to generate a total capital investment of up to $40 million. The new positions will include logistics consultants, sales executives, business development representatives, and a variety of technology positions with opportunities for growth within the organization.

“We’re looking to welcome a diverse mix of talent into the FWF team. From sales experts who will drive our growth, operations staff who will be the backbone of our day-to-day activities, to tech professionals who will innovate and streamline our processes. We’re excited to start this journey in the next few months, opening doors for many talented individuals in the region,” Brawley explained.

He said the company’s decision to expand in West Michigan goes beyond a business strategy since it has a deep connection to the area’s vibrant community. Fifth Wheel Freight was founded in 2012 in Lansing and is now located in the West Michigan city of Kentwood.

“By expanding here, we’re not just growing our business. We’re contributing to the growth of the area and its people. We’re committed to giving back and being an integral part of this community’s development. For us, it’s about nurturing and being a part of a community that has given us so much, a place that truly feels like home,” Brawley said.

Joshua Brawley


He said the company has expanded significantly during the last few years to serve all modes of freight.

“While the building materials’ sector was our starting point, our expansion has diversified our offerings. This growth is about more than just increasing our market presence; it’s about empowering our teammates with new opportunities and challenges,” Brawley added. “As we continue to expand, we’re providing a broader canvas to innovate and excel, not just in different types of freight but also in developing a wide range of skills. This phase of our growth is exciting as it’s focused on the development and enrichment of our team, fostering a dynamic and versatile work environment.”

Fifth Wheel Freight ranks No. 83 on the Transport Topics list of top freight brokerage firms.

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