Integrated Freight closes Lakewood Ranch headquarters

jsalman@bradenton.comMarch 19, 2012 

LAKEWOOD RANCH -- Integrated Freight Corp. has closed its Lakewood Ranch headquarters following months of financial turmoil stemming from the acquisition of Oregon subsidiary Cross Creek Trucking.

Former Integrated Freight CEO and board chairman Paul Henley also has resigned from his positions with the company. Two other independent directors of Integrated Freight, John Bagalay and Kimberly Bors, have both resigned their positions in recent weeks as well, according to the Security Exchange Commission.

Representatives from Integrated Freight couldn't be reached for comment this morning. The company's main phone line has been disconnected.

The Lakewood Ranch address of 6371 Business Blvd. suite 200 will be maintained for mail and official purposes under the cooperation of the landlord, according to company records.

Integrated Freight's latest SEC filing March 9 stated "the assets we acquired in the purchase of Cross Creek Trucking Inc., which secured obligations of Cross Creek, have been foreclosed upon and recovered by the respective Cross Creek creditors."

"We have surrendered possession of our computer servers and peripheral equipment to our vendor. We have substantial unpaid obligations."

Cross Creek Trucking was shut down in December by federal safety regulators over licensing and insurance issues. Company executives said at the time the move was only temporary, with plans for a re-startup this spring.

That never materialized.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration seized Cross Creek's operating license Dec. 19 because the company failed to meet its $750,000 insurance requirement, government records show.

More than 150 drivers and 20 office workers at the Oregon facility were laid off at the time. Even before that, trucks were idled, parts not properly stocked, and fuel was in short supply, according to reports from previous employees.

Integrated Freight Corp. has been in financial turmoil since acquiring the Oregon carrier of organic fruit and vegetables last April.

"This is not permanent," Integrated President Hank Hoffman had told the Herald in December. "In the end, it was just unavoidable. We're getting this financing thing taken care of, which has taken way longer than we expected."

The company secured a $3.4 million loan last year to refinance previous equipment purchases at the Oregon subsidiary and trim operating costs. But that wasn't enough to fully restore operations or keep the doors open at the Lakewood Ranch headquarters.

Integrated reported $19 million in total assets, with $26.9 million in total liabilities. The company also recorded a net loss of $2.8 million for the three quarters ended Sept. 30, the latest financial report with the SEC.

The loss was attributed to the Cross Creek acquisition and liabilities surrounding a pending lawsuit involving Smith Systems Transportation, Integrated's subsidiary in Nebraska.

Smith Systems is now battling massive legal costs tied to a hazardous waste spill in Sacramento, which is estimated to be more than $1 million, SEC records show.

Josh Salman, Herald business writer, can be reached at 941-745-7095. Follow him on Twitter@JoshSalman

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