Milwaukee, WI, June 7, 2018 – 2017 was a good year for third-party logistics in the U.S. Armstrong & Associates, Inc. estimates that net revenues expanded 5% to $77.1 billion and gross revenues increased 10.5% to $184.3 billion.

Dedicated Leads the U.S. Third-Party Logistics Market
Tight carrier capacity pushed shippers to dedicated contract carriers in 2017. Dedicated Contract Carriage (DCC) revenues increased 10.2% over 2016 – significantly higher than its compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7% since 1995. Overall, U.S. third-party logistics (3PL) market revenues were up 10.5% to $184.3 billion.

Tight truck capacity and increasing truckload carrier rates are also driving overall growth in the Domestic Transportation Management 3PL segment. Domestic Transportation Management (DTM) gross revenues increased 16% over 2016 to $71.7 billion and net revenues were up 6.4% to $10.9 billion. The difference in growth rates reflects some gross profit margin compression due to quickly tightening truckload capacity in Q3 and Q4 of 2017, requiring freight brokers to pay rate increases to carriers faster than they can negotiate increases with shippers. With carrier supply and demand smoothing out somewhat, 2018 looks like a strong year. In Q1 2018, C.H. Robinson had increases of 14.9% and 10.1% in overall gross revenues and net revenues, respectively. C.H. Robinson accounts for approximately 14% of the DTM segment’s gross and net revenues.

International Transportation Management (ITM) is benefiting from tight air freight capacity due to the global growth in e-commerce and an overall strengthening of global economies. ITM gross revenues increased 10.5% in 2017. Net revenues, reflecting capacity pressure, increased 4.3%. However, Q1 2018 has seen better growth for Expeditors, Kuehne + Nagel and DHL. Expeditors’ gross revenue was up 9.7% and net revenue grew 9.9% in the U.S. Like other major ITM providers, Expeditors has tightened operations to improve gross margins.

While most 3PL providers are reporting tight warehouse capacity, Value-Added Warehousing and Distribution (VAWD) or Contract Logistics was the laggard in 2017. Gross revenue and net revenue increased 2.5% about 60% of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) growth.

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Armstrong & Associates, Inc. (A&A) was established in 1980 to meet the needs of a newly deregulated domestic transportation market. Since then, through its leading Third-Party Logistics (3PL) market research and history of helping companies outsource logistics functions, A&A has become an internationally recognized key resource for 3PL market information and consulting.

A&A’s mission is to have leading proprietary supply chain knowledge and market research not available anywhere else. As proof of our continued work in supporting our mission, A&A’s 3PL market research is frequently cited in media articles, publications, and securities filings by publicly traded 3PLs. In addition, A&A’s email newsletter currently has over 62,000 subscribers globally.

A&A’s market research complements its consulting activities by providing continually updated data for analysis. Based upon its unsurpassed knowledge of the 3PL market and the operations of leading 3PLs, A&A has provided strategic planning consulting services to over 30 3PLs, supported 17 closed investment transactions, and provided advice to numerous companies looking to benchmark existing 3PL operations or outsource logistics functions.

For more information, please contact:
Evan Armstrong at +1-608-268-5860, or email
Amy St. Peter at +1-414-545-3838, or email

Armstrong & Associates, Inc.
10401 West Lincoln Avenue, Suite 207
Milwaukee, WI 53227 USA
Phone: +1-414-545-3838 Fax: +1-414-545-3906