Airforwarders Association FORWARD Magazine, Fall 2018
53 airforwarders.org Fall 2018 Q Forward Magazine In 1992, Rick Campbell opened an agency with a small freight forwarding company in the Baltimore metro area. Although this was a great opportunity, he knew he wanted even more: the chance to make an impact in the industry. A little more than a year after opening the agency he decided it was time to start his own company. “From a small seed, a mighty trunk may grow.” – Aeschylus ICAT Logistics was officially incorporated in the fall of 1993. When their doors first opened, business was conducted in a modest, one-room office space that could fit enough desks to accommodate their four employees, one of whom was Rick Campbell, himself. The office space was in dire need of cleaning, as the past tenant left the place in disarray. Amongst the rubbish of the place was a pot with what appeared to be a mostly-dead plant. Before disposing of it, Rick said, “Let’s see if we can save it.” The First Agency A little less than a year after incorporating ICAT Logistics, the first agency came on board. He was a familiar face and former colleague of Campbell’s from the original freight forwarding company. Dan Cser joined ICAT Logistics in July 1994 as the Detroit agency owner and had the commitment and drive to live by the mission. Throughout the years, Dan and his brother, Chris, had to overcome several challenges. These included tasks such as hiring a solid salesperson, closing major accounts, and at one point, having to lay off everyone at their location in order to stay afloat. In the most uncertain of times, the Cser brothers came out on top. When business began to pick up in 2010, they decided it was time to expand and re-hire some of their team. In just the last few years, Detroit’s business and employee base have increased dramatically due to several factors, including the rebound of the automotive industry, a realigned focus, and hiring numerous salespeople, particularly the top salesperson in the entire company. When asked why he took the chance with ICAT Logistics, Dan responded, “I was looking for that different approach. Twenty- four years later, I am still with the company and growing my business to levels I never imagined possible. ICAT has stayed true to their values and has asked for my personal input on growing the network. It’s been a win-win partnership since the beginning.” Overcoming Unforeseen Challenges When Rick first started ICAT Logistics, his dream was “to help all those we touch grow positively.” The foundation of the company was built on that statement and it is still adhered to today with the utmost propensity. With a ‘you grow, we grow’ mentality, ICAT has been able to endure some of the greatest times, as well as some of the toughest. The ICAT core values posted on the wall at the corporate office. The first ICAT Logistics trifold. The second ICAT Logistics trifold. The current ICAT Logistics trifold.