FedEx Corp. announced today it would re-brand its two LTL operating companies, American Freightways (AF) and Viking Freight, as FedEx Freight. They will continue to maintain separate operations to optimize service in their respective geographic markets, but will work closely with other FedEx companies.

"This move will boost our sales and marketing capabilities in the growing LTL market," said Frederick W. Smith, FedEx Corp. president & CEO. "While AF and Viking have excellent reputations in their market segments, they will now join their sister FedEx companies to compete collectively with the transportation industry's most diverse portfolio of shipping services."

FedEx purchased Caliber System Inc. in 1998, which included the Western regional LTL carrier Viking Freight. Last year FedEx Corp. acquired AF, a regional LTL carrier operating in the Midwest, South, and Northeast.

The two networks offer direct service to virtually all U.S. zip codes, including Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Internationally, AF and Viking provide service to Europe, Canada, Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean.

"This is a timely and logical evolution of our strategy to accelerate the growth of the regional LTL freight business through a common branding system," said Douglas G. Duncan, president & CEO of FedEx Freight.

"When the two companies were brought under the FedEx Freight umbrella last year, we predicted that they would generate more revenue than they could independently and that has largely turned out to be true. AF and Viking employees have collaborated exceptionally well during the last year in exploring mutually beneficial opportunities to serve our customers better," Duncan added.

FedEx said re-branding the nearly 40,000 pieces of equipment operated by AF and Viking is expected to take up to 36 months.