Dunavant Bulks Up in Memphis, Texas

By Amos Maki for the Memphis Daily News

Richard McDuffie was busy working in his East Memphis office when a company representative delivered the news.

Dunavant, a leading global commodities distributor, was going to be honored at the White House in May for its efforts to increase exports.

“I thought it was an awesome honor and I was so happy for the team because of all the work they had put forward,” said McDuffie, chief operating officer for Dunavant Logistics Group LLC. “I was proud of them and proud of Dunavant.”

It’s been that kind of year for the Memphis-based company, which continues to expand its operations with new warehouse and container drayage terminal capabilities.

“We’ve continued to concentrate on our four main verticals in global, freight, distribution and solutions, and we’re growing all areas of the company,” McDuffie said. “We continue to make strategic investments where we need to, which leads to more opportunities.”

Some of that investment is happening in the Memphis area.

Dunavant has added a Memphis-area drayage terminal and additional Memphis warehouse space.

The new local container drayage terminal is located at 6850 Stateline Road near I-240 and Highway 78 in Olive Branch. The new facility gives the firm a drayage facility in its home base and fits strategically within the company’s network of 10 other terminals across the Southeast and Midwest. Shane Rodgers, a 20-year veteran of the intermodal industry, is serving as the terminal manager.

“We’re really pleased we get to put our flag here in Memphis from a drayage standpoint,” McDuffie said. “We certainly feel like we can build a strong business around what we’ve been doing, and with Shane, who brings a lot of experience to the table.”

Dunavant, in conjunction with MLGroup, has added roughly 100,000 square feet of Memphis warehouse space at 4289 Concorde Road. The facility shares 12 dock doors and has easy access to railroad services, interstates and Memphis International Airport.

The company doesn’t disclose its client list but the Memphis warehouse will provide cross-dock services for a growing flooring and products retailer and order fulfillment services for a consumer outdoors goods company.

In addition to the recent Memphis-area moves, Dunavant just opened an additional 185,000-square-foot warehouse in Pasadena, Texas, to expand its Houston warehouse presence. The warehouse – now close to 400,000 square feet – sits within minutes of the Barbours Cut and Bayport terminals.

Dunavant, founded in 1928 and based in Memphis, gained more than 50 years of experience in logistics and supply chain management as one of the largest global commodities distributors in the world. The company sold its cotton interests to Louis Dreyfus in 2010.

Dunavant retained its real estate development and capital management divisions, as well as its truck brokerage group, which it has had since as far back as 1970.

In early 2011, Dunavant Transportation decided to enter the asset-light side of the trucking business, so it acquired two companies – Trans Gulf Transportation and Sea Lane Express – to gain a larger footprint throughout the Southeast.

The company has a strong focus on ocean drayage and domestic drayage, which complements its freight forwarding business.

Services offered by the company include container drayage, cross-docking, trans-loading, chassis leasing and other yard services. Dunavant is heavily involved with the agricultural commodities, retail, paper, chemicals and food products sectors.

“We continue to make steady progress moving toward being a very recognized name in the (third-party logistics) world,” McDuffie said. “It’s not just about growing the business; it’s about growing it profitably where it benefits everyone.”

See original article here: http://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2015/jul/24/dunavant-bulks-up-in-memphis-texas/.