Roanoke company to rebrand

Roanoke-based Lawrence Companies, a freight company, is undergoing a re-branding effort.

Since 1932, Lawrence has done business in the Shenandoah Valley, employing 525 people and contracting with 150 to 175 owner-operator truck drivers. The company is involved in an array of ventures, ranging from data management, freight, sales of construction and agriculture equipment and home and office relocation services.

According to Barry Barnes, vice president of sales and marketing, the company is trying to offer a more cohesive message to consumers.

“We have so many businesses, we’re just trying to get them all under one name and one logo so more people can recognize us and know what we do,” Barnes said.

Barnes said the company, with a fleet of 300 tractor-trailer trucks and 650 trailers, moving vans and flat beds, does a lot of business in freight, selling equipment and moving.

“We do a lot of moving for government and military in the northern Virginia region,” Barnes said. “Also, we have a lot of shipments going up the 81 corridor and out 64 into the Midwest.”

According to Barnes, the company is trying to consolidate its marketing strategy, not its operations.

“We did a little restructuring on the corporate end of things behind the scenes, but we are definitely in a growth mode and this move will absolutely not result in layoffs,” Barnes said. “We’re just trying to practice clearer messaging with potential customers.”

Barnes said one of the strengths of the company is since 1997, it operates under an Employee Stock Ownership Plan, which means every worker at the company owns a piece of stock.

“Because we’re owners, people are lot more invested in making sure the company does well,” Barnes said. “We do little things to save costs, like empty our own garbage cans. If I go to a meeting and leave the light on in my office, when I come back, somebody will have turned it off.”

Lawrence Companies has locations in Roanoke, Waynesboro, Staunton, Harrisonburg, Charlottesville, Greensboro, North Carolina and Winston-Salem, North Carolina. According to Barnes, the company has expanded to the Virginia Tidewater region, with an office opening in Suffolk.

Contact staff writer Henry Culvyhouse at 540-465-5137 ext. 184, or hculvyhouse@nvdaily.com