Small player in logistics successful despite obstaclesRed Arrow, a small company based in Seattle, Washington, is an upstart in the competitive logistics industry. However, although it has only ten employees, the company is on course to raise revenue from $4.5 million in 2009 to $6 million this year, a 33 percent increase. To achieve growth in a tough economic environment, the company has focused on certain industries and improved its business efficiency.

Red Arrow keeps its business costs down by contracting trucking outfits instead of owning its own fleet, and transports goods from companies that weathered the recession well. The company's chief executive, Liz Lasater, asserts that the company often works with clients like government agencies and renewable energy businesses because they both have high-margins, allowing for increased profits.

Moreover, Lasater affirms that she tries to outsmart her conglomerate competitors, so "I think about what I can do to outperform them." One method she finds particularly effective is to incentivize her employees to improve efficiency: when the employees meet "monthly profit goals, they get a numerical percentage of our gross profit number."

Ultimately, Laseter says the best way to achieve logistics proficiency and augment revenue is to horizonatally "build sectors then vertically integrate them with your customer base." Her business philosophy is paying off: Large companies are constantly contacting her to buy her company, offers she routinely turns down.
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