Follow us on Twitter!
Blog Header Logo
DG&A's Transportation Consulting Blog
Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Railway Association of Canada

Pierre Berton, the late, famous Canadian author noted in his book, “The Last Spike,” that CP Rail has held a respected place in the country’s history.  He wrote that “no other private company, with the single exception of Hudson’s Bay Company, has had such an influence on the destinies of the nation.” For most of the past 15 years, CP Rail faced stiff competition from CN Rail as Paul Tellier and Hunter Harrison led the company’s move from a bloated government run enterprise to a highly profitable public company.  In fact CN’s operating ratio of 61.3 is not only the best among the major North American railroads, it is one of the best of any company in the transportation industry.

The fact that CP Rail lagged so far behind CN Rail and the other class 1 railways in North America led the activist investor Bill Ackman, of Pershing Square Capital, to launch his “palace revolt” proxy battle that resulted in the replacement of CP’s former President with Hunter Harrison, whom he brought out of retirement to drive the railway’s profit improvement.

As we pass through the last quarter of this year, Canada’s two largest railroads are heading down separate tracks.  With an operating ratio is the low 80’s, Mr. Harrison has embarked on a series of actions to reduce costs through improved asset utilization.  This is another way of saying that CP Rail is planning to move its equipment more quickly and efficiently, to become Canada’s second “precision” railroad.   It is seeking to accomplish this by undertaking a series of initiatives.  These include:

  • Building trains at CP’s intermodal terminal in Vancouver with blocks of cars for long haul destinations. This reduces stops and streamlines connections.
  • Increasing average train lengths to 7,000 to 12,000 feet
  • Speeding up the fueling of trains
  • Improving daily scheduling
  • Investing $1.2 billion in 2012 and $1 billion in 2013 on key infrastructure projects
  • Working with customers at both ends to improve coordination

The net result of these changes is that CP Rail now provides 4 day transit times between Vancouver and Chicago and Toronto.  These changes represent half of the transcontinental trains that CP launches daily across its network.  Mr. Harrison is not expecting an overnight drop in the company’s operating ratio.  He told Bloomberg News that he is targeting about 65 percent in the next four years.

Shippers appear to be taking notice of improved service on both major Canadian railways. 

Hits: 21379
Continue reading 0 Comments

Most Recent Posts


Tag Cloud

Rotman School of Business professional drivers Freight Capacity the future of transportation LCV's Job satisfaction Politics FCA CN Rail 2014 freight forecast Wal-Mart Adrian Gonzalez Regina Trucking Life Lessons 2013 Economic Forecast Ferromex Canada autonomous vehicles 3PLTL transportation news Canada-U.S. trade agreement YRC Shipper FuelQuest Load broker Transplace Freight Carriers Association of Canada truck driver 3PL Social Media NCC hiring process Freight Rates Celadon Packaging Conway Omni Channel network optimization MBA TMP Worldwide Map-21 NAFTA Freight Toronto Global Transportation Hub CITA Shipper Pulse Survey Yield Improvement Driver Shortage Canada U.S. trade Search engine optimization CP Rail dynamic pricing Comey freight transportation in 2011 Dan Goodwill Doug Nix mentoring broker bonds Canadian truckers Warehousing Success Climate Change Business skills freight forwarders freight agreements LTL IANA Retail transportation Masters in Logistics Transportation Buying Trends Survey freight transportation conference selling trucking companies freight payment freight audit intermodal driver Dedicated Contract Carriage Career Advice President Obama energy efficiency Hudsons Bay Company peak season carrier conference Rail Accessorial Charges ProMiles Software Advice business start-up Driving for Profit Distribution NMFC Retail driverless Business Strategy tanker cars pipelines Education employee termination Infrastructure Training Scott Monty LinkedIn future of freight industry BNSF Derek Singleton shipper-carrier collaboration FMCSA NS economy Social Media in Transportation rail safety 2014 freight volumes shipping wine dimensional pricing Dedicated Trucking Freight contracts broker security Truckload Reshoring Railway Association of Canada buying trucking companies Transloading Crisis management JB Hunt solutions provider Bobby Harris drones Transportation service Swift fuel surcharge UP Leadership home delibery bulk shipping Freight Shuttle System derailments CSA scores KCS Crude Oil by Rail automation US Manufacturing FMS freight costs Rate per Mile Right Shoring USA Truck cheap oil Muhammad Ali Otto Fire Phone Werner Transcom Fleet Leasing FCPC Canadian economy BlueGrace Logistics Transportation Failure Deferred Packaging Trump marketing Spanx Freight Management Global experience freight transportation Associates capacity shortage Stephen Harper Trade Vision driver shortages Entrepreneur 2014 economic forecast Horizontal Supply Chain Collaboration Microsoft truck drivers Inbound Transportation Carriers economic forecasts for 2012 customer engagement Finance and Transportation shipping consumer centric Consulting Canadian Transportation & Logistics University of Tennessee e-commerce transportation audit Cleveland Cavaliers US Housing Market Success failure entrepreneur US Economy CSA 2012 Transportation Business Strategies. Jugaad Schneider Logistics Freight Recession RFP financial management APL robotics Facebook Tracy Matura CRM freight audit $75000 bond Loblaw trucking company acquisitions Broker Surety bond US Auto Sales 2015 Economic Forecast CSX TMS Sales Management Canada's global strategy freight rate increases ShipMax CN New York Times small business Canadian freight market Colilers International shipper-carrier contracts coaching Sales Training transportation newspaper Management US Election Keystone Pipeline 360ideaspace freight payment David Tuttle Emergent Strategy Transport Capital Partners (TCP) Twitter Harper Davos speech freight RFP Donald Trump routing guide freight cost savings EBOR Blogging capacity shortages shipper-carrier roundtable MPG freight bid Doug Davis Business Transformation Strategy Amazon Training New Hires freight broker TransForce

Blog Archives