ABF Freight System, Inc

ABF Freight System, Inc

company_name = Arkansas Best Corporation
company_type = Public (ndaq|ABFS)
slogan = Expect More
location = flagicon|USA Fort Smith, Arkansas, USA
key_people= Robert A. Davidson, President and Chief Executive Officer Chris Baltz, Senior Vice President of Yield Management and Strategic Development
Wes Kemp, Senior Vice President of Operations
Roy Slagle, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing

industry = Transportation
products = LTL Freight, ABF U-Pack Moving, ABF TimeKeeper, Freight Value, Turnkey
num_employees = 13,000 (2007)
revenue=profit $1.18 Billion (FY 2006) [http://www.abfs.com/about/news/2007/p012407.asp ABF Press Release - ABF Reports 2006 Operating Ratio of 92.5 ] ]
homepage = [http://www.abfs.com/ www.abf.com] (Corporate) [http://www.upack.com/ www.upack.com] (ABF U-Pack Moving)
[http://www.timekeeper.com/ www.timekeeper.com] (ABF TimeKeeper)
[http://www.freightvalue.com/ www.freightvalue.com] (FreightValue)

ABF Freight System, Inc, or simply ABF established in 1923 was originally called Arkansas Motor Freightways. Its name evolved to reflect company's internal drive for growth and excellence becoming "Arkansas Best Freight" or ABF for short. Many older Arkansans call it either Arkansas Bull Frog, or Arkansas's Best Friend. Ultimately, in the 1970s it shortened the corporate moniker simply to ABF to reflect its growing national coverage and avoid a regional reputation. Ironically its moniker also accumulated freight behind the ABF. Probably due to another trucking company called AB Freight. From its humble rural origins in Fort Smith, Arkansas ABF rose to become one the largest trucking concerns in the US. Over the years it acquired, merged, and grew enduring recessions and even a hostile wall street take over in the 1980s. It has shaped the economy of Arkansas, the nation and the world. It has done this by focusing on its business model, and innovating. Its drivers and terminal personnel are unionized by the Teamsters. One of its former subsidiaries is USA Truck.

Business Segment

It is an (LTL) or " [Less than Truckload] carrier.


ABF currently employs over 13,000 people, including 7,000 drivers. It is a subsidiary of Arkansas Best Corporation [ [http://www.marketwatch.com/tools/quotes/profile.asp?symb=ABFS&sid=8864&siteid=mktw ABFS Profile - Arkansas Best Corp Profile - ABFS Company Information - Arkansas Best Corp Company Information ] ] (NASDAQ|ABFS), listed by "Forbes" [ [http://www.forbes.com/2005/12/21/400-best-biggest-companies_06platinum_land.html/ America's Best Big Companies - Forbes.com ] ] as one of the “400 Best Big Companies in America.”

afety Standards

Recently it was recognized by the [http://www.truckline.com American Trucking Associations'] Safety and Loss Prevention Management Council for the thirtieth time. ABF is the only major carrier to have won both the Excellence in Security Award and the Excellence in Claims/Loss Prevention Award in the same year, which ABF accomplished both in 2005 and 2001. Also in 2001, [http://www.networkworld.com/ecomm2001/winner/winner.html/ "Network World"] named ABF the "E-Comm Innovator of the Year." "CIO" [ [http://www.cio.com/search/index.html?cx=005964914320811651291%3Axkqet_zlicy&q=ABF+Freight&sa=%BB&cof=FORID%3A09/ Search - CIO.com - Business Technology Leadership ] ] , "InformationWeek" [ [http://informationweek.com/TechSearch/Search.jhtml;jsessionid=PEISSJZGHMPNGQSNDLPSKH0CJUNN2JVN?site_id=InformationWeek&personality=category&queryText=ABF+Freight&Search.x=16&Search.y=8/ InformationWeek | TechSearch ] ] , "InfoWorld" [ [http://search.infoworld.com/query.html?qt=ABF/ Google Custom Search Engine- Result Page ] ] magazines have highly praised and cited ABF’s strategic use of advanced Web based tools for its customers. In 2006, ABF gained its fifth consecutive listing on "Selling Power" magazine’s annual ranking of the best companies to sell for [ [http://www.arkansasbusiness.com/article.aspx?aID=96415.54928.108538&view=all&link=perm ArkansasBusiness.com - ABF Among 'Best Companies to Sell For' ] ] .

In 2002, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta discussed security and safety with ABF executives. “ABF is a proven transportation leader, winning numerous awards for safety, security and customer service,” stated Secretary Mineta. “They are a role model for our entire industry. Through this meeting, I expect to get a better understanding of the key elements of ABF’s success, particularly the training and procedural components that keep ABF at the top of the industry.” [http://www.ttnews.com/members/printEdition/weekly.archive/09.09.02.asp]

Operations, Technology and Logistics

ABF operates 1,600 road tractors, 2,700 city tractors, and more than 17,000 trailers. The carrier has a three-year road tractor replacement cycle, which provides a relatively young tractor fleet. ABF operates equipment in all 50 states, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The carrier offers intermodal freight transport service to 250 ports in more than 130 countries worldwide

Primarily a long-haul (transcontinental) carrier, ABF also handles regional shipments via its RPM Network [ [http://www.logisticstoday.com/sNO/8073/LT/displayStory.asp ABF Enhances Next-Day Service ] ] , providing next-day and second-day shipping. ABF also offers volume shipping, flatbed delivery, and ReloCube container service for shipping and in-transit storage.

The company provides a variety of shipping logistic support services. The trucking industry has become more sophisticated and information dependent. This has led to communication issues between the customers and the companies. ABFS has made an effort to address and simplify and educate the public through the use of recognizable industry segment specific service titles. One service for example is called is called TimeKeeper [ [http://www.worldtrademag.com/CDA/Articles/Feature_Article/694242a438dca010VgnVCM100000f932a8c0____ Executive Overview: WHAT BUSINESS LEADERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT:
Trucking Trends - Feature Article - World Trade
] , another is an expedited service for time-critical and time-definite shipments called TurnKey [ [http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/gi_0199-537071/ABF-TurnKey-takes-off-Trucking.html ABF TurnKey takes off.(Trucking) Industry & Business Article - Research, News, Information, Contacts, Divisions, Subsidiaries, Business Associations ] ] , a customized delivery, unpacking, and set-up service; Another, Reverse Logistics [ [http://www.inboundlogistics.com/articles/features/0903_feature02.shtml Inbound Logistics: Feature Story ] ] , a service for planning, implementing, and controlling the flow of materials and related information back through the supply chain; another is called FreightValue [ [http://www.bmaster.com/nov13auction/transportation.htm BatchMaster's Auction & Appraisal Services - RIGGING ] ] , a brokerage service for shipments requiring special equipment or handling; Supply Chain Services [ [http://scmr.uark.edu/members.asp?show=abf Supply Chain Management Research Center ] ] , a network for warehousing, order fulfillment, packaging/light assembly, labeling, product inspection, and testing; U-Pack Moving, a self-load household goods moving service; and Trade Show [ [http://www.eaca.com/.docs/article_id/130/pg/11315 Showfloor_Buzz ] ] , a special service for transporting exhibit materials.

Since 2004, ABF has provided shipping and logistical support for the producers of the ABC Television reality series "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" [ [http://www.roadstaronline.com/2005/11/054a0511.asp Extreme Move-over ] ] .

Innovation and Core Expansion

While ABF is primarily B2B (LTL)carrier the carrier also has a service called U-Pack Moving. It is a hybrid of the DYI and the commercial home moving business. It integrates well with its its core (LTL) business [http://moving.about.com/b/a/257635.htm] .

The U-Pack move [http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=2050] involves an empty, secured convert|28|ft|m|sing=on shipping container (called a ReloCube) It is priced comparable to other DYI services. The customer only "packs" and "unpacks" the "upack" containers, or ReloCubes. ReloCubes are designed to hold a room’s worth of furnishings and to fit into a typical parking space. The Relocubes are loaded, carried, and unloaded by the ABF. The customer avoids the drive or the driving unfamiliar equipment and hazards.

The Web Marketing Association awarded ABF U-Pack Moving a 2005 WebAward for the Best Institutional Services Web Site [http://www.aristotlewebdesign.com/about/awards.asp] . The upack website provides quote calculators, quote request, enables tracking, and other associated services.


External links

* [http://www.abf.com ABF Freight System, Inc.]
* [http://www.upack.com ABF U-Pack Moving]
* [http://www.arkbest.com/ Arkansas Best Corporation]

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