Kenan Advantage Group, a large tank truck transporter and logistics provider based in North Canton, Ohio, has completed its acquisition of Jack B. Kelley Inc., which it says is the largest independent transporter of industrial gases in the United States.

Founded in 1946, the Amarillo, Texas-based company transports nitrogen, hydrogen, oxygen, argon, helium, carbon dioxide and liquid natural gas (LNG) across the U.S., Canada and Mexico. These gases are used for numerous applications within a diverse range of end markets, including metals and mining, chemical, food and beverage, healthcare, electronics, energy production and many others.

"The acquisition of Jack B. Kelley is a perfect strategic fit to our newly formed Merchant Gas Group," said Dennis Nash, CEO of KAG. "Coupled with the acquisition of Quakertown, Pa.-based Cryogenic Transportation, Inc., in December of 2010, we are now the largest, most qualified and safest transporter of industrial gases in the U.S."

With these two acquisitions, the company's Merchant Gas Group now has a network of 25 strategically located, full-service terminals across the country, a fleet of approximately 470 cryogenic and specialty trailers and over 500 drivers trained and dedicated to the merchant gas industry.

"This is a very specialized business that cannot be entered without an established core competency, which is why we chose to build this platform around the two most experienced carriers in the business," Nash said. "With the knowledge and expertise gained through these two companies, we expect to expand this platform by continuing to aggressively grow our core industrial gas business as well as the LNG and CNG (compressed natural gas) distribution business."

Kenan Advantage Group operates nationwide through its four groups consisting of the Fuels Delivery Group, Specialty Products Group, Merchant Gas Group and the Logistics Group. Its subsidiaries across the country include Advantage Tank Lines, BXI, Cryogenic Transportation, DistTech, Jack B. Kelley, KAG West, Kenan Transport, Klemm Tank Lines, North Canton Transfer, Petro-Chemical Transport and Transport Service. KAG's fleet consists of 4,200 power units and 5,800 trailers.