Old Dominion Freight Line today announced a 15% increase in revenue for the first quarter of 2008. Revenue increased during the quarter to $368.2 million, up from $319.9 million for the first quarter of 2007. Net income for the first quarter of 2008 was $10.4 million, or $0.28 per diluted share, compared with $13.6 million, or $0.36 per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2007. Old Dominion’s operating ratio for the latest quarter was 94.3% compared with 92.2% for the first quarter last year.
“Old Dominion’s operations performed relatively well in a challenging environment for the first quarter of 2008, with increased revenue and tonnage coming in slightly below our expectations,” said Earl Congdon, executive chairman of Old Dominion. “Our operating results were masked, however, by the significant increase in fuel costs for the quarter, a competitive pricing environment and costs associated with severe weather that affected parts of the United States throughout the first quarter.
“Our revenue growth reflected an 8.3% increase in tonnage on a comparable-quarter basis consisting of a 2.6% increase in weight per shipment and 5.6% increase in the number of shipments. Revenue per hundredweight, excluding fuel surcharges, increased 0.8% during the quarter despite the negative effect on this metric from both the increase in weight per shipment and 1.4% decline in length of haul.
“During the first quarter, we continued to execute our geographic expansion strategy through the acquisition and integration of Bob’s Pickup & Delivery. We added the 12 service centers that Bob’s operated in Montana to our existing service center network, which allowed us to initiate direct, full-state service to Montana. As a result, we now provide full-state coverage in 39 states and direct service to all 48 states in the continental U.S. At the end of the first quarter, we operated a total of 204 service centers compared with 184 service centers at the end of the first quarter of 2007.
“We are confident in our ability to continue gaining market share within our existing service center network and through the opening of new service centers. Old Dominion is strongly positioned to meet increasing demand for comprehensive transportation solutions with high quality customer service, transparent execution, rapid transit times and broad geographic coverage. We are also unique in our ability to deliver these solutions on a regional, national and international basis through one fully integrated non-union company.
“Even with these strengths, we remain cautious in our earnings outlook for the remainder of 2008 due to a challenging economic environment and ongoing pricing pressure experienced through the first quarter. As a result, we have today established a new range of $1.85 to $1.90 as guidance for 2008 earnings per diluted share compared with the previous range of $2.00 to $2.05.”