Suddath to Buy Three Locations as Graebel Van Lines Ceases Operations

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The Suddath Cos. agreed to acquire three locations of Graebel Van Lines as part of a wind down of Graebel’s operations throughout the country.

CEO Mike Brannigan said Suddath Relocation Systems will take over facilities in San Jose, California; Portland, Oregon; and Orlando, Florida, and is working to hire former Graebel employees and contractors to support the business.

Officials at Graebel could not be reached for comment, but media outlets have reported closures of facilities and layoffs in various locations, including Wausau, Wisconsin, where David Graebel started the business in 1950.

Graebel later relocated to Aurora, Colorado, and in 2014 family members sold Graebel Van Lines and Graebel Movers to Thomas and Vasilia Peterson, owners of All My Sons Moving & Storage, a Dallas company that specialized in local moves.

Graebel Moving and Workplace Solutions ranked No. 82 on the Transport Topics Top 100 list of largest U.S. and Canadian for-hire carriers in 2015 with annual revenue of $270 million.

After selling the business, the Graebel family continued to operate Graebel Cos. as a non-asset-based relocation consulting and freight brokerage firm. They no longer have any connection to the moving and storage business that appears to be shutting down.

In an interview March 23, Brannigan told Transport Topics that his company was approached by a firm that specializes in corporate restructuring and asset liquidations, and while the full scope of what is planned for the rest of Graebel’s business isn’t clear, the company has ceased operations.

The planned acquisition will double Suddath’s business in San Jose and triple the size of operations in Portland while significantly expanding the company’s commercial moving services in those markets, Brannigan said. In Orlando, Suddath will move its operations into a larger Graebel facility.

“Graebel’s portfolio of business aligns with Suddath’s growth objectives,” Brannigan said, “and this move enables the company to bolster resources, capacity and innovation in these three markets and elsewhere.”

Suddath ranks No. 49 on the for-hire TT100 list with annual revenue of $600 million in 2015 and is the nation’s fifth-largest household goods mover, based on rankings compiled by Transport Topics. The largest carrier, UniGroup Inc., based in Fenton, Missouri, is a holding company for United Van Lines and Mayflower Transit and generated total revenue of $1.7 billion in 2015. Sirva Inc., in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois, operates Allied Van Lines and is the second-largest mover with annual revenue of $1.5 billion. Atlas World Group, the parent of Atlas Van Lines, is next with annual revenue of $845 million and XPO Logistics generated revenue of $692.8 million in its final-mile delivery business unit.


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