Bradley S. Jacobs is managing director of Jacobs Private Equity, LLC, and chairman and chief executive officer of XPO Logistics, Inc. (NYSE: XPO).
Jacobs' track record in the business world is unique. He has founded five companies to date and built them all into billion-dollar or multibillion-dollar operations. XPO is the 7th best-performing stock of the last decade on the Fortune 500 based on Bloomberg market data, and XPO Logistics, United Rentals and United Waste were all ten-baggers, with the share prices rising more than 1,000% from the time Jacobs took control.
Over the course of his career, Jacobs has led teams that integrated approximately 500 acquisitions and opened over 250 greenfield locations, raised over $25 billion of debt and equity capital, including two IPOs, and created icons of business excellence across several industries. He maintains strong relationships with leading investment banks, sovereign wealth funds and other buy-side institutions.
A singular record of value creation
In 2010, Jacobs formed Jacobs Private Equity to make a substantial equity investment in a single company with the potential for superlative value creation. He selected the logistics industry as a strong match to both his skill set and investment criteria: the industry is large, fragmented and growing faster than GDP, making it ripe to leverage scale and technology.
On September 2, 2011, Jacobs created XPO Logistics, Inc. by making an equity investment of up to $150 million in Express-1 Expedited Solutions, Inc., a small U.S. logistics provider with approximately $175 million of revenue. The stock was publicly traded at the time on the NYSE Amex exchange. Today, XPO is a top ten global provider of transportation and logistics solutions, with approximately $17 billion of revenue. Jacobs Private Equity is the company's second largest shareholder, and Jacobs serves as XPO's chairman and chief executive officer.
Jacobs and his management team have built XPO as a cohesive, energetic organization spanning 30 countries, with 1,504 locations and approximately 100,000 employees serving over 50,000 customers. The company is the industry's foremost champion of technological innovation and a leading service provider in fast-growing sectors, where demand is driven by e-commerce and outsourcing. In North America, XPO is the largest last mile logistics provider for heavy goods, the largest manager of expedited shipments and a top three provider of less-than-truckload (LTL) transportation. XPO owns the largest European road fleet and is a leading LTL provider in Western Europe. Globally, XPO is the second largest freight broker and the second largest provider of contract logistics.
Prior to XPO, in 1997, Jacobs founded United Rentals, Inc. (NYSE: URI) and created the world's largest construction equipment rental company in 13 months. In the 10 years that Jacobs ran United Rentals, the company's stock outperformed the S&P 500 Index by 2.2 times. By 2007, Jacobs had built United Rentals into the 536th largest public corporation in America, as ranked by Fortune magazine, with $3.9 billion in revenue and $1.2 billion in EBITDA.
In 1989, Jacobs founded United Waste Systems, Inc. During his eight years as chairman and chief executive officer, he built the company into the fifth largest solid waste management business in North America. Its stock outperformed the S&P 500 Index by 5.6 times and delivered a 55% compound annual rate of return from IPO until the company was sold for $2.5 billion in 1997. At the time of the sale, the company was a highly integrated organization of 40 landfills, 86 collection companies and 79 transfer and recycling stations in 25 states.
In 1984, Jacobs founded Hamilton Resources (UK) Ltd., a worldwide oil trading company, and served as its chairman and chief operating officer through 1989. During that time, he grew the company to annual revenue of approximately $1 billion through the execution of large contracts with major oil companies and oil-producing countries, and complex countertrade transactions.
In 1979, Jacobs co-founded Amerex Oil Associates, Inc. and served as its chief executive until 1983. Jacobs led the team that grew Amerex from a concept into one of the world's largest oil brokerage firms, with approximately $4.7 billion of annual gross contract volume and offices on three continents. He oversaw all aspects of the business, including brokerage activities for refined petroleum products, residual fuels and energy futures, and personally directed all brokerage operations for international and domestic crude oil.
In 2018, Jacobs was ranked 10th on Barron's list of the World's Best CEOs and was named a Top CEO by Glassdoor in France and the UK. He is a member of The Business Council, Washington, D.C.