Vitran’s losses deepened to $3.4 million in the third quarter, compared with a $2.3 million net loss in the second quarter and a $1.9 million net profit a year ago.
The Canadian-based less-than-truckload carrier increased consolidated revenue 17 percent to $206.2 million, with LTL revenue rising 17.1 percent to $176.4 million. Vitran, the 12th largest LTL carrier in North America ranked by sales, had a $200,000 loss in the first quarter. The $673 million carrier lost $42 million in 2010.
Vitran attributed a portion of its losses to higher healthcare and workers compensation costs, but it is also struggling to turn around its U.S. LTL operations. The cross-border carrier ran into trouble this year after acquiring U.S. regional LTL carrier Milan Express in January and integrating Milan into its U.S. network.
The acquisition extended Vitran’s territory from 29 to 34 U.S. states, stretching the carrier’s reach from the Canadian border to the Deep South and the Carolinas.
“Despite (third-quarter) U.S. LTL tonnage growth of 14.1 percent, our infrastructure requires density improvements,” said Vitran President and CEO Rick Gaetz.
The Toronto-based carrier also is striving for yield and efficiency gains, Gaetz said. “Our principal focus is on the improvement of results in our U.S. LTL operation.