News and Media

Acquisition Strengthens Crowley’s Position as Market Leader in Puerto Rico and in the Surrounding Areas

(SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico; July 1, 2011) ­– Crowley Maritime Corporation announced today that it has acquired the business and assets of Puerto Rico Freight Systems (PRFS), a Guaynabo, Puerto Rico-based logistics company specializing in freight consolidation and less than container load (LCL) transportation throughout the Caribbean.

The PRFS business will become a part of Crowley Caribbean Logistics LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Crowley, and will continue to operate from its existing headquarters under the leadership of Ayesha Diaz, director of Crowley’s Caribbean logistics group, who reports to Carlos Rice, Crowley’s vice president of logistics operations. Michael Padilla, owner of PRFS, will remain in a consulting role.

“Adding the business and assets of Puerto Rico Freight Systems to the Crowley family strengthens our position as a total shipping and logistics provider on the island and in the Caribbean,” said Tom Crowley Jr., chairman, president and CEO of Crowley. “The acquisition will allow us to offer customers more complete solutions targeted to their needs.”

PRFS, which has 46 employees, including office personnel and warehouse workers, coordinates shipments from Europe, Central and South America, Asia and the United States to Puerto Rico, and over 19 destinations throughout the Caribbean Basin. Among their many value-added services, the company provides pick-up service throughout Puerto Rico for LCL and full container load (FCL) shipments and one-carrier responsibility for all Caribbean destinations. PRFS is the premier Non-Vessel Operating Cargo Carrier (NVOCC) and freight consolidator in Puerto Rico, and is the only NVOCC to receive the Exporter of the Year award from the Puerto Rico Manufacturers Association.

Other PRFS services include risk insurance, documentation, bills of lading to the Caribbean from international origins, hazardous material (HAZMAT) handling and shipping, U.S. Customs bonded cartman’s licensing, container freight station services, and more. The company also operates a protected U.S. Customs bonded container station warehouse comprised of 51,000 square feet in the San Juan Free Trade Zone, which gives the company the versatility of a domestic freight station within the security of a free trade zone. The facility is specially designed to handle oversized cargo and employees use a triple-check system to ensure shipment accuracy.  All of these services will be continued under the Crowley Caribbean Logistics name.

“Puerto Rico Freight Systems has already developed the relationships, quality and reputation that Crowley customers have come to expect, and we are certain that all involved will benefit greatly from the synergies that exist between the two companies,” said Steve Collar, senior vice president and general manager of Crowley’s logistics group. “This strategic acquisition helps to solidify Crowley as a market leader in the region, a benefit that will translate into better solutions for customers.”

Among those who will benefit from the acquisition are manufacturers in Puerto Rico seeking to export goods as well as customers in the Caribbean in need of Puerto Rico suppliers. PRFS’ expansion into import services from around the world gives Puerto Rico and Caribbean importers access to more competitive sources, and the company’s exclusive network of agents throughout the Caribbean and the world are able to assist with importing to the region.

The PRFS acquisition is the latest in a series by Crowley designed to provide customers with more transportation and logistics solutions and the ease and convenience of dealing with a single-service provider.   

In September 2010, Crowley acquired Islandwide Air and Ocean to offer customers ocean and air transportation, trucking, transportation management and warehouse services in Puerto Rico. With the addition of Islandwide, Crowley is able to offer less-than-container-load (LCL) freight transportation from the U.S. mainland to Puerto Rico from the company’s Miami and Jacksonville warehouses, as well as from a new consolidation center in the Northeast. Ultimately, by integrating its suite of logistics services with Islandwide’s and now with PRFS, Crowley will be able to take advantage of new market opportunities that enhance its overall presence in the Caribbean.

And in January of this year, Crowley acquired Jarvis Freight International, Inc., a Houston-based freight forwarding, export packing and logistics company primarily serving the energy, oilfield and mining industries. The addition expanded Crowley’s logistics services to new industries and geographic areas.

PRFS was founded in 1985. For additional information about the company, please visit: www.prfs.com.

Crowley has been providing ocean cargo transportation between the US, Puerto Rico and neighboring islands for more than 50 years and is the No. 1 carrier in the market.

Jacksonville-based Crowley Holdings Inc., a holding company of the 119-year-old Crowley Maritime Corporation, is a privately held family and employee-owned company. The company provides marine solutions, transportation and logistics services in domestic and international markets by means of six operating lines of business: Puerto Rico/Caribbean Liner Services, Latin America Liner Services, Logistics Services, Petroleum Services, Marine Services and Technical Services. Offered within these operating lines of business are: liner container and breakbulk shipping; logistics; contract towing and transportation; harbor ship assist and tanker escort; energy support; salvage and emergency response through its TITAN Salvage subsidiary; vessel management; vessel construction and naval architecture through its Jensen Maritime subsidiary; government services, and petroleum and chemical transportation, distribution and sales. Additional information about Crowley, its subsidiaries and business units may be found on the Internet at www.crowley.com

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