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June’s Franchise of the Month: Jason Eckhardt BlueGrace South Jersey

Jason Eckhardt leads a franchise that is a consistent chart-topper. His leadership style is fun, outgoing, yet well-planned and extremely productive. He now has a team of 7 employees and has grown his franchise by 70% over the past year. Jason has been a franchise since 2011, when BlueGrace began offering the business opportunity and he hasn’t looked back since.

“I’d like to thank the Academy…just kidding. Being Franchise of the Month is quite an honor. I’m proud of my team for the success we’ve experienced since we opened BlueGrace New Jersey South” says Eckhardt.

Jason Eckhardt, CEO of BlueGrace South Jersey
Jason Eckhardt, CEO of BlueGrace South Jersey

BlueGrace Announces the Official Sponsors for #DoubleUp14


Who’s ready to visit Vegas? The 4th annual BlueGrace Logistics Franchise Conference, Double Up 2014, is right around the corner and we couldn’t be more excited! This year’s conference will be held at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, Nevada, July 13th – July 16th. The focus will be on doubling our business, where participants will learn new sales techniques that will enhance productivity in the workplace. The conference will not only consist of interactive workshops and training sessions, but also three world famous Keynote speakers as well as an exhilarating performance by one of the busiest performing mentalists in the country, Oz Pearlman (pronounced Oh’s).

Jack Daly: speaker, trainer, coach, author, and an expert in sales and sales management, inspiring audiences to take action in customer loyalty and personal motivation. He delivers explosive keynote and general session presentations. Jack brings 20 plus years of field proven experience from a starting base with the CPA firm Arthur Andersen to the CEO level of several national companies.

Ross Shafer: One of the most sought after Keynote speakers and seminar leaders on the subjects of Customer Empathy, Personal Motivation and Business Relevance. He is a 6-time Emmy Award Winner and writer of 14 H.R. training films on customer service, motivation and leadership. He is the author of books such as Nobody Moved Your Cheese, The Customer Shouts Back, Customer Empathy and many more!

Steve LeFever: part comedian, part financial manager, former commercial banker, current entrepreneur and 100% world-class presenter. Steve drives home his message with a no-nonsense, laugh-out-loud approach that makes him the top-rated presenter at virtually every conference he attends. Driving financial discipline and initiating change in diverse types of organizations (distribution networks, trade associations or franchise groups to name a few) can be a big challenge and in this area, Steve LeFever can do it like no one else.

The Mentalist, Oz Pearlman: Oz developed an interest in magic at a young age and what started as a mere hobby became a lifelong passion. He has now been dazzling audiences with his mind reading abilities & world-class sleight of hand for over two decades!

BlueGrace is pleased to announce MercuryGate as a platinum sponsor for the conference. They are the main sponsor for the Double Up Gala which takes places on Tuesday, July 15th at the Comme Ça Restaurant inside the Cosmopolitan, and we want to shout out a big thank you for their participation! BlueGrace is also happy to announce the list of Gold sponsors who are key players in promoting value added content to the events agenda. They include: Shift Freight (Official sponsor of keynote speaker Jack Daly), SMC3 (Official conference training sponsor), Global Industries & CI Group (Co-op editorial sponsor), TranSoulutions (Official conference training sponsor). Stay tuned for more news on Double UP 2014, 30 days in counting. This is one Gala you do not want to miss and we hope to see everyone there!

For more information visit:


BlueGrace Announces May’s Franchise Of The Month

Jeff Kelly

BlueGrace Logistics, one of America’s fastest growing logistics companies has expanded their Franchise network to a peeking 50 locations. Among all of our Franchise locations we recognize one outstanding Franchisee for their exceptional performance each month. BlueGrace’s May Franchise of the month is our LA North location, owned by Jeff Kelly. Kelly has been chosen for his outstanding participation in all training programs and meetings. He has showed a large amount of overall growth in revenue, customers and shipment count. This past month Kelly presented the Franchisee monthly calls and sharing his story, of aligned growth with BlueGrace. His advice is to guide Franchise owners into the right direction or to help them make the right decision of the direction to take their Franchise. Kelly is always one of the most active Franchise owners here at BlueGrace. He was just featured in Entrepreneur’s Franchise Players, Kelly continues to always have a positive attitude and is a true example of what we look for in a Franchise owner.

“We at BlueGrace North Los Angeles are humbled and take immense pride in being named Franchise of the Month.  Every day we enjoy and look forward to our consistent pursuit of excellence in our field and craft. To be singled out amongst a sea of truly professional and high performing franchises and business owners, is truly an honor. Every member of our staff takes great pride in what they do day in and day out. Armed with a fantastic BlueGrace system including people, technology, knowledge and pricing, our staff’s enthusiasm grows exponentially with each new day.  We all need shades, because the future is so bright.  A sincere thank you to the BG staff and executive leadership for this nod as well as to my people that make it happen and exceed expectations EVERY…SINGLE…DAY.  Go get em’!!!!” – Jeff Kelly, Owner of BlueGrace Logistics Los Angeles.

BlueGrace Marietta, Blue Grace Marietta, BlueGrace Logistics

BlueGrace Marietta Franchise Owner Participates in 2014 Boston Marathon

MARIETTA, GA – BlueGrace Logistics Franchise owner Slade Casey of BlueGrace Marietta (, is running in the 2014 Boston Marathon. Casey qualified for participation in 2014 and will be leading the way for BlueGrace. Slade has been a Franchise owner since 2013 and has since provided a strong presence in the area. Members of the BlueGrace headquarters plan to watch his progress online as he runs for one of the most memorable races to date.

“I am blessed to have qualified at a time when remembrance, sadness and celebration will dominate the emotions of the day. No matter how I perform it will be a special day to be a participant,” says Slade Casey owner of BlueGrace Marietta.

On Monday, April 21st 2014 the world’s oldest annual marathon, The Boston Marathon will take place in Boston, Massachusetts. It is one of 6 world Marathon majors and is ranked as one of the world’s best-known road racing events. The event attracts 500,000 spectators each year, making it New England’s most widely viewed sporting event. This years race is following the tragedies of 2013’s “Boston Marathon Bombing”, and BlueGrace Marietta is proudly sponsoring this event.


BlueGrace Logistics WILLIAMSBURG (, franchisee of BlueGrace Logistics, announced a successful delivery for Heat Factory USA, as they delivered a “hot” commodity for “IceBowl 2” this Sunday. 70 thousand pairs of packaged hand warmers were delivered to Lambeau Field for Green Bay Packers fans as they take on the San Francisco 49ers for what some call the coldest game in NFL history.

“We value our partnership with Heat Factory USA, and are happy to be part of delivering warmth to the people of Green Bay,” says Tim

Salavejus, Franchise Owner of BlueGrace Williamsburg.

Green Bay will face the 49ers on Sunday January 5, during Winter Storm Hercules at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, WI.
Green Bay will face the 49ers on Sunday January 5, during Winter Storm Hercules at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, WI.

Winter Storm, Hercules, will give the 49ers one of the most frigid welcomes they have ever seen. In the face of extreme weather, long distance and critical timing, BlueGrace was able to provide a solution. The hyper-growth company was able to deliver the 70 thousand hand warmers by noon

on Friday, January 3, in plenty of time to meet the needs of Heat Factory USA and Green Bay Packer fans.

Heat Factory USA ( is a trusted partner of BlueGrace Logistics and is one of America’s most recognized Hand Warmer Company since 1980. Heat Factory is a full C Corporation and Woman Owned Enterprise.

The nationally recognized retailer has sent out a release on this news and it can be found on the Green Bay Packers Official Website. To read the full article, click here.

Guaranteed vs Expedited Shipping

Every day shipments are booked for pickup with LTL carriers, and on occasion those carriers get overloaded and miss the pickup. A serious problem arises when that freight was time critical, such as a manufacturer waiting on freight from their vendors to finish a product. In cases like this, we have seen plants shut down until the freight arrives.

One way to help prevent this situation from occurring is a guaranteed shipment. By placing a day guaranteed on your shipment, the LTL carrier will be responsible if the freight misses that guarantee. They are much more inclined to pick up freight with guarantees attached to avoid paying the freight charges.

In case a carrier does miss the pickup on a time sensitive shipment, an expedited shipment may be required.  A dedicated carrier is called in to move the freight. This carrier picks up the freight and drives straight through until it arrives at the specified delivery location. Shipping costs for Expedited Freight can become expensive, as you are paying for a dedicated truck. However, when you compare the costs of expedited shipping versus the cost of shutting down the manufacturing plant, it may be a bargain.

Freight traveling cross country may require an air rate. When the freight is sitting in Laredo, TX and needs to be in Boston, MA by 10 AM the next day, the freight must be sent by air. This can be very expensive as airline space is very limited.

BlueGrace Logistics are the experts in expedited situations and the phrase our LTL representatives typically hear is “you just saved my job!” The worst feeling in the world as a customer is knowing that your job may be on line if the freight does not arrive. When you have a hotel opening in New York on Saturday and the drapes are still in Alabama on Thursday morning, that sinking feeling in your stomach will not go away until the freight arrives. On Friday morning when the customer calls to say “Thank you! You saved my job!” there is a feeling of significant relief for them – which is the best feeling for our company.

Avoid the stress and don’t play with chance, setup your next time sensitive shipment with BlueGrace Guaranteed services.  In the event you need expedited help, BlueGrace can help you there too.


BlueGrace Logistics

Got Freight? Get a Quick and Easy Freight Quote

BlueGrace Logistics will be closed for Labor Day on Monday 9/2


BlueGrace Logistics and all Carrier Partners WILL BE CLOSED ON MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 2013.  We will resume business the following day on Tuesday, September 3rd. We’d like to wish you all a great, relaxing Labor Day Weekend.

Need help before the holiday rush? Call your dedicated rep or reach one of our logistics experts at 800.MY.SHIPPING or get an Quick & Easy Freight Quote Online.

Thank You,

BlueGrace Logistics

Need a Freight Quote?  Get one Quick & Easy Here

Fitting the Bill – The Benefits of Intermodal Shipping

With Trucking providing competitive rates and shipments more manageable than ever, why would anyone look to an option with limitations such as intermodal shipping? Naturally one would think there is a more efficient option nowadays than using the old Transcontinental Railroad for transporting goods.

The answer may surprise you. Intermodal shipping has actually been on the rise and offers a unique set of benefits that can actually suit some shipments better than the most popular option of trucking.

Pros of Intermodal

  • Typically cheaper than over the road full truck loads
  • Great for long distance Shipments – Coast to Coast or Over 800 miles
  • Multiple rail providers have increased availability and competitive pricing
  • Not estimated rates – Pricing is locked in

With the pros, come the cons of Intermodal

  • Freight cannot be time sensitive
  • Only full loads- cannot move “LTL” – moves as a 53 ft container
  • Must book with 24 hours’ notice
  • MAX weight – 43,500 lbs

How about an example of how Intermodal is great for long distance project moves?

BlueGrace Intermodal freight

A customer of ours was in the midst of plans to relocate their warehouse from Chicago, Illinois to Houston, Texas and needed to ship over 40 full load shipments to their new location.

Seems easy enough, right? For a truckload representative, they think they just got the sale of month! Unfortunately for them, Intermodal priced each load $300 cheaper for than over the road. Instantly, shipping by rail presented a $12,000 difference in savings over the freight spend for 40 full truckloads. If pricing alone wasn’t enough, there were additional benefits that ended up making Intermodal the crucial choice.

During the move they loaded 3 containers per night, staggered the deliveries to by letting them go to the rail yard and sit when needed (rail yards give 1-2 days of free time, in comparison having to pay a driver to sit overnight or get detention on a delivery). In addition, one carrier was scheduling all the appointments which eliminated the confusion with multiple truckload drivers

For this customer, shipping Intermodal made the whole difference. Rail provided them with the flexibility to manage a successful move by saving over $10,000 in freight costs alone, by allowing them the capability to stage the delivery as needed so that the receiving warehouse would not be overloaded, and avoided a potential logistics nightmare with 40 different trucks from different carriers.

Next time you are looking to make a sizable, long distance shipment, make sure to check out any intermodal shipping options.   Contact a rail shipping representative today. You can also request a rail freight shipping quote to see cost savings.


BlueGrace Logistics

Got Freight? Get a Quick and Easy Freight Quote

The Real Meaning of a Shoulder Ride

As a father to two little girls I have found myself as the proverbial donkey for the last 10 years. It’s a rare occurrence if I’m involved in any sort of walking with my girls, whether it is 20 feet or a mile, my shoulders aren’t carrying one of them. A few months ago I had pulled something in my neck rendering my shoulder ride services useless for a few days. During that time I learned just how lucky I was to be able to give shoulder-rides, albeit amidst the constant whine of newly mobile princesses. I pondered what having the privilege actually meant and listed below are some of what came to mind.

If you are giving a shoulder ride:

  1. You’re probably healthy, strong
  2. You’re carrying someone that loves you dearly
  3. You’re carrying someone that you love dearly
  4. There’s a good chance the rider is your child, in which case you are exponentially blessed for the good fortune of being able to have a child
  5. You’re likely outside or cruising a mall, breathing fresh air
  6. It’s likely you’re off work, probably headed somewhere you really want to be
  7. You almost certainly don’t have a sunburn (not earth shattering but I LOATH sunburns)
  8. You feel safe to walk openly with a small child in public areas; this is not something the entire world enjoys. If you’re lucky enough to be a US citizen then add to your blessings
  9. You’re making someone so very happy and without costing a cent
  10. If you’re not lifting a child, you’re likely lifting a teammate or friend in celebration, again, you are likely healthy and strong.
  11. You like serving others and have a kind heart, which is a true gift

This list could continue for miles but the point is you are amongst the utmost blessed should you find you’re giving a shoulder ride. Healthy, loving, loved, safe, happy, serving, and grateful are all appropriate words for those lucky enough to be carrying another. You are the real 1%, the most fortunate of all in these circumstances.

There is a strong symbolism of a shoulder ride in its power to assist another. Shoulder rides can carry someone else in time of need or simply take a little pressure off someone’s feet for a while. Maybe you can’t lift someone because you’re not near them in distance, maybe you are across the world from them. But chances are, you can lift almost anyone if you have the desire to do so.

There is a potential in all of us to give to others, to support them, and to lift them.

In many of life’s circumstances I find that it’s either necessary or simply a lot of fun if you’re carrying someone, literally or figuratively. As for me, I healed fast that week and have had an added zest for placing my heart on top of my shoulders every chance I get.


Sometimes you get to be the rider…

 Man on the shoulders of another man

 -Bobby Harris

 President & CEO

BlueGrace Announces New Franchise Website

BlueGrace Logistics is proud to announce the launch of the new franchise Web site – The new site will take the lead in providing franchise specific information for those interested in starting a BlueGrace Logistics Franchise. BlueGrace Franchise site will also provide information on the franchise process, D2: Discovery Day, resources, in addition to providing details on how to apply.

Having been recognized as the fastest growing logistics and transportation company by Inc. 500, BlueGrace offers a powerful franchise opportunity for those who desire growth and success. Franchisees not only gain an industry leading brand name in BlueGrace, but inherit multiple layers of support, BlueShip technology, and resources that will guide any franchise owner whether or not they have experience in the industry.

BlueGrace is also a member of the International Franchise Association (IFA) and supports IFA’s VetFran strategic initiative in creating opportunities for veterans to start franchises.

Visit for more information. To speak with one of our franchise development reps, please call us at 800.MY.Shipping

It’s not about franchising…It’s about finding the RIGHT franchise.

As most of you now know, BlueGrace Franchise is on the rise! We are consistently adding new locations on the map and the excitement level is high, but it’s not easy and understandably so. Deciding to open a franchise is not a straightforward decision. Here are some tips to follow when considering opening a franchise:

1. Research the industry you are planning on investing in.

This is one of the most critical steps in the decision making process. It’s not easy to just say “I know… I’ll open a McDonalds or Starbucks today…”, because you might find that it just wouldn’t work for you or your personality type. There are thousands of opportunities out there and it’s important to be open to the limitless opportunities.

2. Cost.

Most franchises require a start-up fee, some working capital, etc. For example, BlueGrace Franchise has a $47,500 start up fee which is on the low end compared to most franchise opportunities. But in addition, there needs to be working capital to make sure you can operate and be successful. Take some time to evaluate your personal finances before consulting with a franchise opportunity you are interested in.

3. Evaluate your priorities.

Make sure you’re ready for this!  A decision may require you to consult with a family member, business partner or close friend. It’s important to understand that in order to enjoy the freedoms of a business owner, you need to start somewhere. When you first get started, you’ll need to dedicate time to get things rolling, but the work will pay off.

4. Assess your resources.

Most people don’t need to completely start from scratch. You may have talent, contacts, resources and equipment ready for you to use. You know how they say “hiring from within is less expensive than getting someone new”, well that’s true in more ways than one. Use your resources to help you get started!

5. Make sure the franchise of your choice is reputable and has a team that is there to support you.

Just because a company has a disclosure document (or FDD), doesn’t mean they’re reputable. Again, BlueGrace Franchise as the example here,  has in-house counsel (click to meet Robert Beckmann) with franchise development and support teams to answer any and all of your questions. Make sure you visit the corporate location/office, meet and develop relationships with the people involved with handling your investment.

Hope you found these tips helpful. In lieu of finding a new investment opportunity, you should consider BlueGrace Logistics. They’ll bring you down for Discovery Day and introduce you to the team so you can learn more about the company.

For more information on BlueGrace Franchise, email to our franchise development team or call 800.MY.SHIPPING and ask for the Franchise Development Team!

Hit a Roadblock with the New Broker Bond? A New Path Might Be Just What You Need!

Last month Congress passed a new bill increasing the required surety bond for freight brokers from $10,000 to $75,000. The reasoning behind the bill is to cut down on fraud in the transportation and trucking industries. An increased surety bond would ward away non-compliant small brokers. Larger freight broker operations barely feel this increase and are, for the most part, supporters of this bill. Unfortunately, a large number of ethical and hardworking freight brokers are bearing the brunt of this new bill. Many freight brokers are in business for themselves and run their business from a small or home office.  An increase in a surety bond means an increased rate sent back to their customers and potentially losing that business.  Traditionally the transportation industry has been a great place for the entrepreneurial minded individual to grow and flourish. This new bill is affecting that ideal. This new bill is forcing many to close up shop…but there may be a solution.

Now is a great time for freight brokers to begin looking at partnerships with larger transportation management companies like BlueGrace Logistics. BlueGrace Logistics offers both Franchise and Freight Agent opportunities. These roles give the individual the same freedom and income potential as a Broker but with the support and protection of a larger organization. Brokers would also have a wider array of services to now offer customers. The values remain the same but instead you are now in business for yourself, not by yourself! Check out this video regarding BlueGrace Franchises. Join the conversation on LinkedIn regarding Freight Agent opportunities.  If you are an experienced Freight Broker, current Agent, or a Freight Sales professional we would like to speak to you today!

Partnering with BlueGrace Logistics:

  • Competitive  Splits (Agent)
  • Low-cost Franchise Fee
  • Competitive Royalties (Franchise)
  • Best- In-Class Technology
  • Customer Service Support
  • Full Service Suite
  • Billing Services
  • Enterprise Account Support
  • No territory or compensation restrictions


Continue to do what you love, be free of any bonds, and leverage up your capabilities!

Transitioning Into the Unknown

Steve Goodman BlueGrace Logistics FranchiseeRead the incredible story of BlueGrace® Logistics franchisee and Detroit native businessman, Steve Goodman featured in the Huffington Post Detroit blog. Goodman overcame obstacles caused by a declining economy and made changes in his life so that he and his family could be happy and successful. Goodman’s advice to the millions of others experiencing similar challenges in their life are:

  • Live outside your comfort zone
  • Be coachable
  • Have an open mind to creativity
  • Do things better

BlueGrace Logistics is proud have Steve Goodman aboard the franchising program and part of our family. His experience is a testimony of success and one’s drive to greatness. If you would like to learn about how BlueGrace franchise opportunities can unlock your potential, contact us or visit the BlueGrace franchise website today.

Read the complete story of Steve Goodman, “Transitioning Into the Unknown,” in the Huffington Post.

Low-Cost Franchises Rise in Popularity – Discover BlueGrace Logistics Franchising

What could fitness businesses, mosquito control and third party logistics companies all have in common? The opportunity to be your own boss with no tricky investments! A recent CNBC article on franchise opportunities discusses the rise in popularity of low-cost franchises in the US. BlueGrace® Logistics Franchise is proof that popular and low-cost franchise opportunities do exist. A BlueGrace franchise is a service-type business growing in a $600 billion dollar shipping industry that does not require a large office space, staff, or industry experience.

Think you can’t afford to go into business for yourself?
Think again.

Financial independence is well within reach thanks to the prevalence of these inexpensive franchising opportunities. It’s simply a question of which one best fits you! There are outstanding low-cost franchise options available for entrepreneurs and experienced business owners alike. You can change your life through business ownership or diversify your business and lower your risk with proven business models like BlueGrace Logistics Franchise. The initial investment and startup costs are minimal and no previous industry or business ownership experience is necessary.

Though the investment may be smaller, you should still place thorough research at the top of your to-do list before jumping on-board the franchisee train. Below are some tips to help you succeed before and after signing on the dotted line.

  1. Understand the marketplace. You don’t need to be a subject matter expert. In fact, many franchisors prefer their owners to house their talent in sales and marketing to drive the business.
  2. Pay attention to consumer trends. Keeping a watchful eye on emerging industries and the fluctuating economy can help you stay on-top of what will be the most profitable for your business.
  3. Choose a franchisor that offers ongoing support for your team. Do they provide in-depth training to get you started out on the right foot? Do they offer advertising and marketing support?

You can see by the growing popularity and affordability that benefits to owning your own business are clear. So the question now becomes, “How can I afford not to?” 

Are you attending the International Franchise Expo (IFE) in NYC this week? We’d love to meet you – Stop by Booth #364 to meet our team and discover if a BlueGrace Franchise is right for you!