Saia Inc. reported April 27 first-quarter net income of $21.1 million, or 80 cents per share, an increase of 85% from the $11.4 million in net income and 44 cents per share reported in the first quarter of 2017. Revenue rose 22%, to $393 million from $323 million.
The jump in income was attributed to a lower income tax rate and alternative fuel tax credits for the full year of 2017, enacted in the quarter. The credits added 3 cents per share to income.
“During the quarter, we opened two new terminals and put hundreds of new tractors and trailers into service across our networks,” said Rick O’Dell, CEO of the Johns Creek, Ga., less-than-truckload carrier. Last year, Saia opened eight terminals, and it now operates 156 across 39 states.
Operating performance was solid across the board, with the firm’s operating ratio coming in at 93%, down 160 basis points from 94.6%. LTL tonnage rose 12.2%, to 1.2 million from 1.1 million a year ago, while the number of LTL shipments grew 8.4%, to 1.8 million from 1.6 million.