Heartland acquires CFI's non-dedicated dry van, temperature-controlled truckload operations

Updated Aug 26, 2022
CFI tractor-trailer

North Liberty, Iowa-based Heartland Express, Inc. Monday announced it will acquire the Contract Freighters non-dedicated U.S. dry van and temperature-controlled truckload business and CFI Logistica operations in Mexico (“CFI”) from TFI International, Inc. for $525 million.

CFI Dedicated and CFI Logistics U.S. brokerage operations are not part of the transaction. 

CFI will continue under its existing brand, management, and terminal locations.

The acquisition of CFI, together with the recent Smith Transport acquisition, will make the consolidated Heartland Express group the 8th largest truckload fleet in the U.S. and 3 rd largest based on irregular route, asset-based truckload carrier in the U.S., according to a statement from Heartland. 

“We are thrilled to welcome CFI to the Heartland Express family of companies, where it will continue to operate from Joplin under its own brand and current leadership team," said Michael Gerdin, chairman, president, and CEO of Heartland Express.  "CFI has exactly what we look for as we expand – significant scale, a respected and recognizable brand, capable management, safe and experienced drivers, a strong asset base, and a complementary terminal network. CFI’s strengths in the north-south midwestern corridor will add to our driver and customer capability, and their cross-border expertise will help us capitalize on the expected long-term freight volume benefits of nearshoring activity by manufacturers.

RELATED NEWS: Heartland Express acquires Pennsylvania-based truckload carrier Smith Transport

"At the same time, we can offer the CFI people a home that is entirely focused on their core – high-service, irregular route, asset-based truckload freight transportation. Over time, we expect to gain meaningful synergies and operate our consolidated business on a larger scale at our historical margins.”

Headquartered in Joplin, Missouri, CFI provides dry van and temperature-controlled truckload services to customers throughout the U.S. and into Mexico and Canada. CFI Logistica provides asset-light truckload and less-than-truckload services in Mexico, in particular serving as a distribution partner for several large U.S. LTL companies.

CFI owns its headquarters which covers approximately 200 acres in Joplin, along with facilities in Laredo, Texas; West Memphis, Arkansas; Taylor, Michigan; Sanford, Florida; and Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico. These six locations will be acquired by Heartland and bring the total to 30 owned terminals across the U.S. and Mexico. CFI has 2,100 tractors and 8,000 dry van and temperature-controlled trailers. All tractors and trailers are owned except 93 tractors and 136 trailers. In addition, CFI contracts with approximately 250 independent contractors who provide their own tractors.