At 630,000 square feet, the ITS Logistics transportation, warehouse and distribution company is now located in the single biggest building in the Sparks’ industrial area at 555 Vista Boulevard. Signing the lease only a few months ago, ITS consolidated its two office buildings and five warehouses into one space.
“We were like goldfish- every time we moved into a new building we outgrew it,” ITS Logistics Director of Marketing Patrick McFarland said of how fast the company has been growing. The 555 Vista location was originally built by General Motors and then taken over by SanMar Corporation, who currently leases the space to ITS.
“It’s nice having everyone under one roof, but this is such a big space,” McFarland said. “We used to be fighting for it.”
McFarland gives me a tour of the “industrial chic” building, which is spacious and clean compared to the supposedly cramped quarters before. “It’s a good thing you have comfortable shoes,” he adds as we take off through the executive offices, warehouse, dispatch area, IT, and transportation departments. We meander through the 30,000 square footage of office space with another 600,000 in products ranging from pallets of airline sodas and snacks to exercise equipment.
We walk by a full section of computer monitors and standing desks (a new trend in office ergonomics) and then we pass the empty forklift parking lot. “This is where I want to put a basketball hoop,” says McFarland.
After going through a section smelling of breakfast (which was housing gigantic bags of granola, wheat, and cinnamon), we are in the transportation department with 79 loading docks. When ITS signed the lease on the building, they were able to design it however they wanted. Everything is designed for efficiency and a high level of customer service, which is what the company is built on.
As we continue to take in the sweet smell of cinnamon and granola, McFarland explains that ITS Logistics is comprised of three divisions- transportation, brokerage, and warehouse. Their perfect clients use ITS for all three mediums and once the deal is sealed, it’s up to ITS Logistics to deliver.
Along with the transportation and warehousing services, ITS Logistics added a brokerage division about five years ago with its main office in the Bank of America building in Reno. Hiring former NFL player Mike Crawford to run the division, him and his team just raked in over $50 million for the company. The three-fold commission level of the brokerage firm pays out bonuses based on individual performance, team, and office revenues brought in.
ITS Logistics was founded in 1999 by three local Nevadans who attended University of Nevada, Reno together and majoring in different, yet compatible fields. CEO Jeff Lynch got involved in the transportation business at a young age and loved finding solutions to customers’ biggest challenges. ITS’ CFO Dan Allen was born and raised in Reno and studied accounting at UNR, becoming a CPA at one of the world’s largest accounting firms. Another Reno local and UNR graduate Darryl Bader studied logistics at college, becoming COO at ITS.
The three friends split up the responsibilities and ownership evenly amongst the three of them and then brought in CCO Greg Sanders, a 30-year expert in managing multi-million dollar logistics companies to help jump to that next level. ITS recently broke its $100 million revenue mark this year.
“We will probably double in size in the next three years,” McFarland says.
We meander over to the dispatch/transportation area of the building where the drivers lounge has laundry services, lockers, a pool table, showers, TV’s, and vending machines. McFarland says that truck driver turnover is notoriously high (somehow over 100 percent) so ITS does its best to keep drivers happy and at home with their families as much as possible. He adds that transportation services struggle with the fact that the truck driver workforce is diminishing but the industry is growing. “All product needs to be stored and shipped- simple as that,” says McFarland.
Along with offering competitive pay, retirement and other benefits, ITS drivers are treated with respect. “A lot of times drivers are just given numbers and are treated badly from dispatchers. Here, dispatch calls the drivers by name,” he adds.
After almost getting caught up in a foam dart gun fight with other employees (“You didn’t get shot, did you?” Lynch asks me), we head back to the warehouse where we walk through floor to ceiling pallets of dried milk and ab rollers. We go through the pick n’ pull section (for small quantity online orders) before making our way back up to the executive suite again.
After a thorough tour of the new building, I’m impressed at the welcoming and friendly employees, how McFarland knows everyone by name, and how approachable the executive team is. Once ITS Logistics gets settled into its new space, they will hold a big grand opening for the community.