The boss of Leicester-based Premier Logistics believes its purchase of fellow Pall-Ex member CJ Express means it has hit the big time.

Speaking about the deal for the first time, Premier Logistics MD Lee Christopher told MT that the purchase of Hull-based CJ Express was transformational.

“It means group turnover is now around £21m, moving us into the [MT] Top 100 of  transport companies, and opening more doors for us as we become better known within the industry,” said Christopher.

“We have a whole new corridor to tap and will be able to achieve new efficiencies across our enlarged operation.”

He added that the deal, completed in May for an undisclosed sum, was also about building the team and establishing a presence in the north-east in “a fantastic industrial area”.

To this end, CJ Express founders husband and wife team Paul (known by his middle name Nick) and Susan Carter have joined Premier as compliance and health and safety managers.

The CJ Express brand, created by the Carters in the 1990s will endure, although a new CJE livery that incorporates Premier Logistics design cues can be seen on five new Actros trucks and trailers that have recently joined the fleet.

Christopher said around £500,000 had been put aside to renew the CJ Express fleet in the coming months, including three more Actros trucks (one of them a rigid).Two SDC trailers are already on order.

Following the deal Premier Logistics, which has a Reading base at the former Cobley Transport (Reading) site, now has approximately 150 employees, 125 vehicles and 300,000 ft2 of warehousing space across its three locations.

CJ Express operates from the St John’s Business Park, but Christopher said the business would likely move to new premises within 18 months.