By Jim Harris, Transportation and Logistics International —
Eric Barton knows what it takes to transport fuel and other important supplies safely in some of the world’s most challenging regions. As a U.S. Marine Corps intelligence officer for 11 years, Barton was responsible for threat analysis related to troop and material movement in Kuwait and later Afghanistan. He continued to use these skills after leaving the Marines as a civilian contractor. “I wanted to pursue the niche market of providing armed security, reconnaissance and intelligence for trucks operating in warzones,” he says.
Barton widened his niche in 2007, when he founded his own company, Vanquish Worldwide, to provide logistical, maintenance and support services to U.S. and foreign agencies and international aid organizations. The company truly found its calling in 2011, when it was awarded a $983 million contract by the U.S. government to provide services to armed forces operations in Afghanistan.
The National Afghan Trucking contract involves distributing building materials, security equipment, fuel, miscellaneous dry cargo and life support assets throughout U.S. operations in Afghanistan and to and from forward operating bases and distribution sites. The company has been assigned more than 14,400 missions and, to date, has distributed more than 38.8 million liters of fuel using 5,000- and 10,000-gallon fuel tankers.
Vanquish Worldwide has maintained an exemplary safety record throughout its time on the contract. “We’ve operated with no loss of life or of cargo,” Barton says.
Vanquish Worldwide’s fleet of more than 1,260 trucks has driven more than 5.5 million miles and delivered more than 140,000 tons of dry goods and 80,000 tons of heavy equipment across Afghanistan. The company provides shipping containers and management and logistics support necessary to pick up and deliver shipments, and provides armed security escorts for missions when requested.
“Our convoy management services are integrated into the Afghanistan movement control system using Global Database Management System [GDMS]/Tapestry to achieve theater-wide ground movement visibility across Afghanistan and maintain in-transit visibility at all times,” the company says. “Vanquish provides 24/7 continuous convoy management at our tactical operations center, which includes 100 percent asset tracking of trucks, containers, reefers and fuel from start to finish.”
The company supports its Afghanistan operations with a team of certified full-time mechanics as well as with parts, tools and equipment. “Our trained mechanics are able to recover down vehicles, evaluate and perform necessary repairs either en route or at one of our maintenance facilities throughout Afghanistan,” the company says. “In addition, our personnel provide facility system and generator support at our Afghan villa, which contains our tactical operations center, office space and living quarters. We are solely responsible for ensuring all equipment and satellite connections are in full working order to track trucking assets, communicate with drivers and maintain established remote service locations with dedicated IT support.”
Vanquish Worldwide applies the technology and many of the procedures that have made it successful in Afghanistan to operations stateside. The company serves all 48 contiguous United States from 11 offices and terminals in Knoxville, Tenn., and Loveland, Colo.
The company provides freight services to more than 100 commercial brokers and companies across the United States and Canada as well as to the U.S. Department of Defense. Notable clients include Kodiak Manufacturing and Dell Computers.
Vanquish Worldwide also serves as a subcontractor to FedEx Ground. The company manages daily long-haul routes and provides drivers, mechanics and other support personnel, labor, trucking assets and equipment, as well as tools, fuel, supervision and other services. “We provide timely and reliable line-haul transportation services from Nashville and Knoxville package terminals to other FedEx Ground terminals and hub locations throughout the United States,” the company says.
Regardless of where it operates, Vanquish Worldwide lives up to its slogan of “delivering excellence.” “The values that have set us apart over the past decade continue to guide our company in leading with integrity and excellence,” the company notes. “We are strongly committed to diversity, recognizing that our success depends on bringing together a wide range of perspectives, skills and experiences to find the most innovative, cost-effective solutions for our customers.”
These values, as well as the company’s history of successful operations, have given the company a positive reputation among clients. “Our existing customers keep calling us back, and we keep getting awarded new contracts,” Barton notes.
Find the story online at: http://www.tlimagazine.com/index.php/sections/trucking-and-freight/2186-vanquish-worldwide