Falcon Transport says it's closed; 550 jobs done


Staff report

YOUNGSTOWN

A large Mahoning Valley trucking company may be the latest victim of the General Motors Lordstown Assembly Complex closing.

Belmont Avenue-based Falcon Transport Falcon billed itself as a major service provider for the Big Three automakers. But on Saturday night, its approximately 550 employees purportedly received this text message from a company official:

“We regret to inform you that Falcon Transport is not able to continue operations and will be shutting down effective today. Please stop any work you are doing for the company effective immediately. You are not expected to return to work. Please be on the lookout for further information we will be sending regarding this situation.”

The message was shared on Facebook after 8 p.m. Saturday and generated thousands of comments and shares. It also generated many job offers for and rides home for drivers scattered and stranded across the U.S.

Neither Falcon Transport nor its officials could be reached Saturday night by phone. The Belmont location was locked up tight.

Sunday morning, the first word from the company came out from Facebook when it responded to an interview request with a text: "Falcon Transport is no longer in business."

It was unclear if that message was automatic from the page or typed by an individual.

Trucking industry leader FreightWaves reported the closing late Saturday from the social postings.

No postings through Sunday morning indicate any Falcon drivers are still working.

On social media Saturday, one worker lamented: “What a nice way to lay off all your employees across the country.”

A driver then posted: “As a now former driver for Falcon. It’s not a joke. We lost our jobs today.”

Another person added: “Right, no jokes. Doors closed.”

MSR Transport Services is a Veteran-owned company based out of Ohio, posted: “Another familiar sight in Northeast Ohio is closing their doors effective 2000 hours tonight. Falcon Transport was founded in 1903 with a single horse and wagon and was passed through four generations of family.”

One observer added: “Falcon Transport who had GM in Lordstown, Ohio as a big customer is now out of business due to Lordstown closing.”

A trucker posted: “Falcon transport out of Ohio closed their doors tonight with drivers on the road.”

The Lordstown GM plant made the Chevrolet Cruze, and in March furloughed the last of its three shifts. The plant’s final day of operation resulted in the loss of 1,500 jobs.

In 2017, 800 people were employed by Falcon Transport Co. That’s when Los Angeles-based private equity firm, CounterPoint Capital Partners, LLC, announced it had acquired the transportation logistics provider.

Reports this weekend put the current workforce at 89 office people, 407 drivers, 81 owner-drivers.

Founded in 1903, Falcon has been family owned and operated for four generations and provides flatbed, and over-the-road services to customers including General Motors, Ford, Nexteer, Arcelor Mittal, and U.S. Steel, according to the company’s web site.

According to a media release, CounterPoint Capital Partners focused on acquiring lower-middle market companies headquartered throughout the United States and Canada with $10 million to $200 million in annual revenues. The private equity firm specialized in turnaround, mature and lower middle market investments in companies facing operational and financial transition.

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