Ruan celebrates 75 years in business

Ruan Transport Corp celebrates 75 years of business in 2007. Founded during the height of the Great Depression, the firm has become one of the largest privately owned transportation service companies in the United States.

Across the nation, Ruan employees and customers will celebrate the anniversary with a variety of events and activities. In addition, Ruan is announcing a new driver awards program that will become an annual event recognizing the company's top drivers.

John Ruan founded the company in 1932, when his tuition money to attend Iowa State University ran out and his entrepreneurial spirit kicked in. He saw a need for trucking services in the area, prompting him to trade in one of his family's cars for a truck.

By the 1950s, Ruan was the largest hauler of petroleum in the nation. By 1965, the company was the leading truck-leasing operation in the Midwest. After selling the leasing portion of the business in March 2004, Ruan now focuses on its core competencies of dedicated contract carriage, bulk transportation, and Ruan Certified Brokerage Services.

Ruan has 5,100 employees, including 4,030 drivers. Revenue for 2006 was $700 million. With a plan to grow to a $1 billion company by 2010, the founder's son and current chairman John Ruan III says the company is investing in training, marketing, and growing its next generation of leaders.

In both 2006 and 2007, the company started the year by acquiring a leading foodgrade transporter in California. Kings County Truck Lines, Tulare CA, and Aartman Transport Corporation, Ripon CA, are wholly owned subsidiaries of Ruan. With these acquisitions, Ruan hauls more than 10 million pounds of bulk dairy product per day — that's 30 billion pounds annually.

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