Evansville, (Ind.) -- Atlas Van Lines climbed the ranks among top van lines during 1997, moving up to become the nation's fourth-largest carrier of household goods. Atlas' jump from fifth to fourth place reflects a record year in terms of operating revenues for Atlas World Group, Inc. (AWG), the holding company for Atlas Van Lines, Inc. (Atlas).
According to Howard Parker, chief financial officer for AWG, the company recorded an all-time high of $490 million in consolidated revenues for 1997. That's an 18 percent increase over 1996's record posting of $415 million. "The strong 1997 financial performance is due to a combination of internal growth and new acquisitions," said Parker. "The growth of Atlas Van Lines alone contributed $62.9 million in consolidated revenues." AWG is the holding company for Atlas and its subsidiaries; and Red Ball Corporation and its subsidiaries.
Another sign of Atlas' continued growth is shown in the company's total household goods shipment count for 1997, which stood at a record 96,012, 20-percent over Atlas' 1996 shipment count of 80,125.
"Shipment count, more than anything else, is a measure of the work performed in the van line industry," said Walley Saubert, AWG chairman and chief executive officer. "Shipment count indicates not only an increase in revenue, but also an increase in work activity throughout the entire division, and that is a solid sign of growth."
According to Saubert, Atlas has held the highest growth rate among top large household goods carriers for more than five years.
In addition to a significant increase in revenues over 1996, AWG finished 1997 with a net income of $5.6 million and reported that its debt-to-equity ratio finished at 2.6, down from 2.7 for the previous year.
"AWG exceeded its plan for 1997, and with our growth we'll spend '98 keying up the company's infrastructure to make sure our level of service and internal quality remain at a world class level," Saubert notes.
Saubert projects that the company's consolidated revenues will exceed $500 million in 1998.
With world headquarters in Evansville, Ind., Atlas is a major transporter of household goods and special products through some 600 agents across the U.S. and Canada, and more than 800 worldwide.