By: Brad Payne, VP of Brokerage
Can you give us a look into how Eagle came to be and its strategic placement within the food industry’s supply chain?
Our company originated on the roots of a few long-term relationships in the poultry industry, that still exist over 15 years later. The complexity of transporting time-sensitive perishable commodities was challenging to say the least. We made it a point to differentiate ourselves by understanding that transportation and supply chain never stop, demanding a 24/7 customer service model which catapulted our reputation for superior performance and generated a pathway for exponential growth.
My expertise became ingrained in two things: understanding exactly what shippers needed and possessing extensive knowledge of our customers’ products. I wanted to understand my customers’ businesses, not just the “what” but the “why.” That was crucial in order to deliver consistent exceptional service. The “why” was the ultimate knowledge and understanding of their business from farm to fork to maximize full potential of the supply chain, providing opportunities to haul the same product up to 4 times before it finally arrives to the consumer. With that desire to obtain customer intelligence, it enabled us to further educate and empower our carrier partners with knowledge of the critical details, setting every load up for success from origin to destination.
Before the acquisition happened in January, what made NTG stand out as a partner to the Eagle team?
We were lucky enough to be in a position of power when we began exploring M&A opportunity for Eagle. We spent the time vetting each opportunity in full, deciding at the end of the day who aligned with us from both a culture and service standpoint. Our people, our customers, and our carriers are a top priority for us and finding an M&A match that held those same core values was very important. When NTG came to us, we were refreshed by the sense of energy they bring into a room. With this acquisition, it felt like a partnership – each of us were ready to bring a stronger offering to our network than we could do alone.
Tell us about your overall experience with the transition from Eagle to NTG?
The transition has been a very positive one. NTG has taken the time to work alongside us as we strategize the path forward, prioritizing our people and our network. NTG invested time in developing synergies of our combined capabilities that we can present to further benefit our customers and carriers. The resources available to us throughout this entire process have enabled our team to further develop their skill sets in multimodal solutions while expanding reach across the supply chain network. In turn, our network has benefited from our combined traditional and differentiated capabilities in truckload transportation, fueled by NTG’s advanced technology platform.
Due to COVID-19, onboarding plans were delayed. How did the team adjust to such a long period of time from the acquisition to becoming NTG?
Across the world, this pandemic has presented significant challenges and our situation is no different. I think we can all look around and say we are incredibly thankful to be a part of the NTG organization at this time. Our people have benefited greatly from the level of care and communication that NTG has provided during COVID-19. From brokerage leadership, to corporate resources, HR and IT, we have been able to perform at the highest-level in the face of adversity. This has the rest of the Eagle team even more bought in to be an official part of this organization as NTG Hattiesburg.