Celadon Group – a timeline

February 2020

Land Line Staff

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Celadon Group began its high-flying and fabled history in 1985, and NAFTA trade carried it to the big time before things fell apart in 2019.

1985

Stephen Russell and Leonard Bennett found Celadon with 50 leased tractors and 100 trailers. First contract: hauling auto parts to a new Chrysler plant in Mexico.

1992

Celadon Group Inc. acquires Nueva Laredo-based Jaguar in 1992. It is rebranded Servicios de Transporacion Jaguar SA de CV.

1994

NAFTA goes into effect. Celadon has its initial public offering.

1995

Celadon acquires Cheetah Transportation, Mooresville, N.C.

1996

Celadon moves its headquarters from New York to Indianapolis.

Co-founder Leonard Bennett resigns and agrees to a buyout.

Celadon acquires Burlington Motor Carriers, Daleville, Ind.

2000

Celadon founds Truckers B2B membership program.

2001

Celadon sells Cheetah Transportation to American Trans-Freight, Morrisville, Pa.

2009

Celadon is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

2011

Celadon Group acquires Drums, Pa.-based Martini Transportation and the dry van division assets of Dallas-based FFE Transportation.

2012

Co-founder Stephen Russell steps down as CEO. Paul Will becomes CEO.

Celadon acquires USA Dry Van Logistics LLC, McAllen, Texas, and Hiner Transport LLC, Huntington, Ind.

2013

Celadon Group acquires Hyndman Transport Ltd., Wroxeter, Ontario.

Celadon Group acquires Rock Leasing Inc., Warren, Ind., and Kelly Logistics Inc., Wadley, Ala.

2014

Celadon creates Quality Companies Leasing. The subsidiary later factors into Celadon’s fateful accounting scandal.

Celadon acquires A&S Services Group, New Freedom, Pa.; Buckler Transport, Roulette, Pa.; Evans Equipment Co., Butler, Ind.; and assets of Furniture Row Express.

Celadon sells interest in TruckersB2B subsidiary.

2015

Celadon acquires Taylor Express, Hope Mills, N.C.; A&S Kinard, York, Pa.; and Tango Transport LLC, Shreveport, La.

Co-founder Russell resigns from Celadon board, dies later that year.

2016

Celadon Group, Inc. enters into corporate resolution for securities fraud and agrees to pay $42.2 million in restitution.

2017

COO Eric Meek had resigns after an auditor found irregularities in financial statements for the 2016 fiscal year. Celadon CEO Paul Will resigns and is succeeded by Paul Svindland.

2018

Celadon sells equipment for $50 million to Element Transportation, a subsidiary of Element Fleet Management.

Celadon settles class-action lawsuit brought by investors for $5.5 million

New York Stock Exchange delists Celadon Group in April.

2019

Celadon Group Inc. agrees in April to pay total restitution of $42.2 million for filing materially false and misleading statements to investors and falsifying books, records and accounts.

In April, Celadon sells:

  • Assets of Celadon Logistics to TA Services, Mansfield, Texas.
  • North American intermodal operations to Bison Transport of Winnipeg, Manitoba.
  • A&S Kinard, York, Pa., and Buckler Transport, Roulette, Pa., to Canadian carrier Day & Ross Inc.

In May, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission sues Danny Ray Williams, former president of Celadon-owned Quality Companies. Williams pleads guilty to criminal charges. In July, he agrees to a deal in the civil case.

Former Swift Transportation CEO Richard Stocking in August joins Celadon Trucking as chief transformation officer.

The SEC files a civil complaint on Dec. 5 against former Celadon Chief Operating Officer William Eric Meek, 39, and former Celadon Chief Financial Officer Bobby Lee Peavler, 40.

Celadon files for bankruptcy on Dec. 9 and announces it is ceasing operations. LL