Mexpress was co-founded in 1998 by Mike Gamel, CEO and Carlos Duron, president, with the promise of improving transit times and custom clearance versus regular truck service.
In 1998, moving cargo In-bond through Mexico had just been re-established. But Mexican customs authorities had made the process of getting such operating authority nearly impossible. The reason was that cargo bypassed border clearance, so duties and taxes were not paid on freight until it reached the final airport destination.
Mexpress was able to establish trust partnerships with Mexican government decision makers, after over two years of meeting with Mexican customs. To insure extra security for its customers Mexpress placed team drivers moved only the toll roads and employed satellite tracking. Mexpress company officials also had steel floors installed in its trailers and put up bonds to protect customer’s duty and tax fees in the case of accident or damage.
Mexpress’ persistence prevailed and in 2000, the company began offering in-bond service to Guadalajara and Mexico City airports. Transit times of 48 and 60 hours were soon provided from Los Angeles Airport using Nogales Sonora as the point of entrance, a first in that market. These new transit times competed with deferred and interline air services available at Los Angeles. In many cases, transit times would better standard airfreight services dealing with such delay issues as backed up cargo, lack of dedicated ramp space, or the increasing problem of traditional air freight being bumped for direct cargo from Los Angeles.
Mexpress became the first Road feeder service provider for airlines and international forwarders into Mexico. Mexpress moves cargo on its clients documentation to keep their identity, then is turned over to the client upon arrival at the airport for the customer to handle. Carlos Duron coined the expression, “it’s as if ground cargo was moved to its destination by air.”
In 2005, Mexpress expanded by adding a consolidation hub at both Dallas and Monterrey airports, as a service point. Houston was added the next year. During same time period, Mexpress began assembling a northbound road feeder service, only to be advised by Mexican customs that northbound LTL consolidation was not permitted by law, nor was there a mechanism in their software for allowing export consolidation. Mexpress began lobbying for change in Mexican customs regulations and pushed for updated software. By the end of 2006 Mexpress could finally offer its customers scheduled overnight service from Monterrey to Dallas airport.
Fast forward to today, Mexpress now offers scheduled LTL road feeder service to and from four major US airports, in addition to ad hock service to and from 13 airports in Mexico. Mexpress has expanded its service and account base to include the major airlines, international freight forwarders and cargo integrators.
Mike Gamel believes the biggest lesson they have learned is that although Mexpress had all its IT process in place, the important factor was to build a good solid, reliable and honest customer relationship. This sentiment was extended to government entities as well. The process has taken Mexpress years to build and a lot of hard work by many people. Mike was quick to add, “it has also been fun along the way we have made some fantastic friends.”
Through a combination of innovative thinking, new technologies and international partnerships Mexpress Transportation has successfully eclipsed the goal of “borderless” LTL and TL deliveries in North America.
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