Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Texas Overnight Delivery Service Enters Oklahoma

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Texas Overnight Delivery Service Enters Oklahoma

Article excerpt

When Federal Express was launched nearly 30 years ago, it took on a giant government monopoly, won and never looked back.

Today, FedEx is now the giant that is being challenged. Lone Star Overnight, based in Austin, has opened three Oklahoma offices to handle express package delivery in Texas and Oklahoma.

"We've been in business 11 years and our customers have constantly asked us when we were going to move into Oklahoma," said Gary Gunter, president, chief executive and co-founder. "Well, we finally have made the move.

"There's a tremendous amount of business that flows between the two states. It's only natural that we handle service in both states."

This marks the company's first expansion out of Texas, but probably not the last, Gunter said.

"Future expansion will depend upon how much our customers ask for it," he said.

With both ground and air package service, the regional carrier has achieved a 99.3 percent on-time delivery record -- something that's going to continue in Oklahoma, Gunter said.

"We compete against the three big companies in this industry, so we have to do things different, like guaranteed on-time delivery service," he said. "We also offer later pickup times, if that's convenient for the customer, and earlier delivery times. We have the best on-time delivery record in the industry."

When the company started, it used Dallas-based Southwest Airlines as its corporate model, said Pete Padilla, district operations manager who handles the state's three metropolitan areas.

"They (corporate executives) looked at how Southwest did it and they are trying to do the same thing," he said. "When Southwest started, they had one airplane and served only three cities. They have expanded slowly, taking only small bites at a time and being careful about what they did."

Lone Star intends to do the same thing.

Following that plan, Lone Star Overnight started small, offering only intrastate service. Moving into Oklahoma is its first out-of- state expansion.

"We are able to operate with lower overhead because we don't have all those states to fly to like the big guys do," Padilla said. …

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