It’s been over 85 years since my grandfather, W.W. Estes, bought a used Chevy truck and began shipping livestock and farm supplies across southwestern Virginia. Since that simple beginning back in 1931, Estes Express Lines has grown into the largest privately held LTL company in North America. And the best is yet to come—because our more than 85 Years of Progress is what is driving us into the future.
Throughout 2016, we paid special attention to improving the things that matter most to our customers, and three main elements fed our momentum. First, we listened to our customers and worked to deliver on the initiatives they care the most about. Secondly, new technology—especially on our docks and in our trucks—helped us to expedite some of those improvements. Thirdly, training employees to deliver on those initiatives played a key role in our strategy.
One of the industry challenges on every shipper’s mind is the condition of the freight when it gets to its final destination. In 2016, new technology and training helped ensure that freight arrived on time and intact, and that’s one area where we’ll never stop improving. As we move into 2017, we continue to make some tremendous strides in both our equipment and our procedures. The result is that we’re doing a better job of bracing freight to prevent load shifting, and the new safety features on our trucks are helping to stabilize our trailers and containers. On top of that, vital new technology on the docks is increasing freight visibility and helping to ensure that shipments reach their proper destinations quickly and efficiently.
In addition to being good stewards with your freight, we also feel it’s important to take good care of our environment. Our progress in that arena was also evident in 2016. At the beginning of the year, we went live with yet another solar-powered terminal. Nearly 2,800 rooftop solar panels at our Greensboro, N.C., terminal are now generating one gigawatt hours (1,000 megawatt hours) of clean energy every year, which is removing the equivalent of nearly 700 metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere annually. And we continue to evaluate several more facilities for solar installations across the nation.
If my grandfather were still alive, I’m pretty sure he would be amazed by the technology we have at our fingertips today and the vastly more efficient processes we use that simply would not have even been possible 85 years ago. And I know he would be proud of how far we’ve come and the number of customers we are able to serve.
Thank you for being one of those customers, and we look forward to providing you with the best service available in 2017 and beyond!
President and CEO
Estes Express Lines