OTR Express, Olathe, KS, had a net loss of $814,000 in the first quarter, compared to net income of $144,000 in 1999. The company is in the process of restructuring and hopes to increase the number of owner-operators.
Revenues for the quarter increased 12% to nearly $21 million, up from nearly $19 million in 1999. The company's loss from operations was $327,000 compared to income from operations of $1.1 million in 1999.
William P. Ward, president and CEO said the loss "was brought on by various factors, including fuel costs, driver wages and revenue shortfalls. Currently, our highest priorities are returning
to profitability, improving cash flow and de-leveraging the balance sheet.
"Logistics revenue increased by 23% in the first quarter of 2000 compared to 1999, with most of that increase coming from the rail division in Salt Lake City. In the first quarter, we moved the truck logistics division to another part of our headquarters facility and revised their marketing plan to obtain more of their freight from our network of independent sales agents. We will be aggressively promoting the truck logistics division beginning in the second quarter.
"Average units in service were 606 in 2000 versus 579 in 1999. The 2000 figure includes 112 owner operators compared to 51 owner operators in 1999. As part of our de-leveraging, we are reducing the company owned truck fleet and replacing them with owner-operators. We are currently paying the owner-operators about $0.88 per mile, which makes them less profitable than the company drivers but reduces the leverage on the balance sheet. We are attempting to add two owner-operators for every company truck that we remove from the fleet."
"We anticipate reporting a loss in the second quarter as we continue to strengthen our customer base and adjust to higher fuel costs."