Titanium Transportation Group Inc.: One of Canada’s Fastest Growing Companies
By: Jesse Champagne
The Titanium Transportation Group Inc. is a diverse team that includes asset-based trucking, logistics, and distribution across North America. They provide long haul, dedicated and local trucking services, andmove FTL and LTL freight all over the continent on vans, reefers, flatbeds and other specialty equipment. In their own words, “Our drivers and network of carrier partners are second to none.”
Responsible for a wide range of services ranging from transportation to fleet management, the company has shown substantial growth over the past several years. We recently spoke with Vice President Doug Billau, to learn more about Titanium’s incredible success. In 2013, Titanium was ranked by PROFIT Magazine as one of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies for the 5th consecutive year. Their most recent purchase, JTS (Jackson Transport Systems), brought the asset-based fleet of Titanium Transportation Group to over 150 power units and 500+ trailers. Combined, Titanium revenue is expected to top $50 million this year.
“We are heavily in acquisition mode and we are looking to purchase asset-based trucking companies as well as other types of transportation companies within the supply chain…. We have bought four companies in the past year and we expect to buy at least another 4 this year… Looking down the road, we see ourselves tripling or quadrupling [in size] in the next few years. We want to buy companies; call us!”
In charge of logistics, the division Titanium was founded on, Mr. Billau is responsible for meeting all the needs of its ever-growing customer base. He believes that it is the company’s high level of customer service that has been the driving force behind its success and prosperity.
In a service industry, it is hard to differentiate oneself from the competition. The solution, says Doug, is twofold. “It all starts with the customer, it really does. When I started in this business, I realized that you can’t innovate too much—you don’t have that ceiling where you can create the next iPad. We are in the people business so most of all, we need our team to focus on customer needs and this is what defines us and drives our success. Innovation is all done internally by following good processes and concentrating on IT systems…A strong IT infrastructure coupled with great people is a winning combination. It also helps our business to be scalable which is critical when we are so focused on bringing acquisitions into the group”
“First off, in our line of work we know that, even more than in other industries, you have to have great people. There is no magic recipein our business, so you have to constantly be providing good service to your customers, and the only way to that is with the right people. One thing we like to do is hire entry-level people—like myself, the majority of our staff has come from outside the industry. That way, they come in fresh and ready to learn—we like to train them to do things the ‘Titanium Way,’ which means focusing on the customer. We want our people to come in with enthusiasm and learn the fundamentals of what we do from the ground up.”
“The second aspect of that is your processes—your internal processes. Being a former programmer, I like to break down a business as a step-by-step process… We often ask ourselves, ‘How can we complete this task more efficiently?’ Our company is changing very quickly and so our model has to be scalable and ready to run with every new acquisition and every new hurdle we hit. We’re going from 3 employees to 10 to 20 to over 150, and the processes have to be expandable for each level we’re hitting.”
Speaking about good people on the job, despite the company’s impressive growth over the years, Doug hasn’t forgotten who makes up the face and foundation of the company—the drivers.
“We’re very proud that the drivers are happy. [During our recent Christmas party] I spoke to a lot of our drivers, and there wasn’t one guy in the room who didn’t love Titanium and love the work we’re providing. They’re on the front lines—you need to have happy drivers to have a good transportation company. People provide better service to the customers when they are happy to be at work.”
Ambitious, motivated, and highly focused, it’s easy to see why Titanium has grown from a small-time company into a Canadian dynamo. As we head into a new year, we won’t be the only ones with our eyes focused on this exciting and driven company.