October 20, 2014

Medina
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Brunswick shipping business says it’s building momentum

BRUNSWICK — A new company founded in Brunswick seven months ago is hoping to grow to 120 employees in the next five years.

The company, V3 Transportation, specializes in expedited transportation and officials said their location in the Brunswick Industrial Park puts them in a good location to ship items around the Midwest quickly.

“We chose Brunswick because of its central location in Northeast Ohio,” CEO Bob Poulos said. “When customers come to us, we’re their last resource.”

The company’s clients include a variety of industries ranging from construction, automotive and paper and packaging to hazardous waste.

Poulos said he and John Sliter, president and chief operating officer of the company, aren’t the only ones in the industry who viewed the Akron/Cleveland metro area as a good place to headquarter their operations.

“Two of our largest competitors are within a 20-mile radius,” Sliter said.

One of those competitors is Panther Expedited Services, headquartered at the other end of Medina County in Seville. Both Poulos and Sliter have worked for Panther, with Sliter serving as COO of Panther.

Poulos worked for Panther also, but most recently worked for U.S. Express where served as vice president of sales.

“I guess you could say we’re seasoned veterans in this industry,” Poulos said.

Poulos said he and Sliter decided the time was right to start their own shipping business. The Great Recession took a toll on freight operations and expedited operations and many companies had to scale back their fleets.

“John and I believe we’re entering the next evolutionary cycle in our business,” Poulos said.

The company now employs 17 people at its Brunswick headquarters, 1258 Industrial Parkway North, and it has a fleet of 45 trucks.

Drivers are hired as independent contractors, but their vehicles are used exclusively for V3 Transportation.

The company hopes to grow from the $10 million outfit it is today to a $100 million business by the end of 2017 with about 120 full-time employees at the headquarters and a fleet of 600 vehicles.

Right now, V3 expedites freight to eastern Texas, and all the states east of the Mississippi River except for Florida, New Jersey and the New England region. Eventually, the company hopes to expand services nationwide. It hopes to grow in place with an option to lease additional space in the building it currently occupies.

“We would like to stay here in Brunswick,” Poulos said. “That’s the plan.”

The company hosted an open house Monday for the community and conducted a fundraiser for the Wounded Warrior Project.

“The veterans coming back — their unemployment rate is 20 percent,” Sliter said. “Today we raised money for a soldier who lost his legs in Afghanistan.

“We’re thrilled to be a part of that.”

Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com.