The city of Rogers officially gained a major employer Thursday, and Northwest Arkansas cemented itself as a globally recognized logistics hub.
Transplace, a third-party transportation management and logistics technology firm based in Frisco, Texas, officially opened its 150,000-square-foot regional operations center in Rogers.
CEO Frank McGuigan led a contingent of company officials who joined Rogers leaders, Arkansas government officials and other business leaders for a ribbon-cutting and facility tour Thursday morning.
“Northwest Arkansas is a focal point for innovation, commerce and new business opportunities,” Gov. Asa Hutchinson said. “Transplace is an industry leader and longtime business partner in this community. We anticipate even more progress as they expand to include hundreds of future new hires.”
In Northwest Arkansas, Transplace was previously based at 509 Enterprise Drive, just off Interstate 49 in Lowell, where it employed about 600 workers in approximately 80,000 square feet of office space in multiple buildings.
McGuigan said there are about 800 employees in the new building, with room to add up to 400 jobs in the next couple of years.
“For over 20 years, Transplace has made a commitment to Northwest Arkansas, and our new center of excellence will infuse leading-edge logistics technology, as well as new job opportunities,” McGuigan said. “Our proximity to iconic brands that are among the largest, most prolific shippers, enhances communications, streamlines multi-shipper collaborations and optimizes transportation budgets.”
Developers broke ground on the Rogers building in March 2019, and construction began one year later.
“Our region is an incubator for high-tech advancements and progressive enterprises,” said Mike Preston, Arkansas Secretary of Commerce and executive director of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission. “Transplace’s move from Lowell to this larger, cutting-edge operations center underscores the company’s tremendous growth over the years. This expansion is just the beginning of even more progress as we look forward to continued prosperity for our region.”
The approximately 15-acre site includes courtyards, lighted pedestrian walkways, a retention pond and more than 1,000 parking spaces. Crossland was the general contractor and Corgan was the building designer.
Transplace was created in 2000 by J.B. Hunt Transport Services and five other trucking companies — Swift Transportation, U.S. Xpress Enterprises, Covenant Transportation Group Inc., M.S. Carriers and Werner Enterprises. The business has changed hands several times. J.B. Hunt maintained majority ownership of Transplace until 2009, when it was acquired by private investment firm CI Capital Partners LLC of New York.
In 2017, it was acquired from Greenbriar Equity Group by TPG Capital, a $75 billion private equity firm based in San Francisco. The amount was not disclosed.
“Today’s grand opening marks another exciting step in Transplace’s strong growth journey,” said Jack Daly, partner, and Alex Minasian, principal, at TPG Capital, Transplace’s majority shareholder. “The new center of excellence will drive significant job creation and business momentum in Arkansas’ Northwest region and builds on the company’s leadership in supply chain innovation. We are proud to support Frank and the team in this important milestone.”