Gazelle Transportation was founded in October 1992 by Jerry Eiler who purchased the assets of a small Bakersfield based hazardous waste hauler to form the company. Jerry was previously the President/CEO and partner of Oregon Freightways, a pacific northwest based LTL carrier that was sold to Viking Freight Systems in 1990 and is now part of FedEx Freight.
With Jerry managing operations from his home office in Oregon, Gazelle began operations in January 1993 with 9 trucks and approximately 15 employees.
In April 1993, Ron Lallo, now current President/CEO, joined the Gazelle team. Jerry hired Ron to set up a basic preventive maintenance program and carry out all maintenance and repairs for the fleet. Jerry saw tremendous potential in Ron and in February 1995 promoted him to General Manager. Approximately 2 years later, at 24 years old, Jerry promoted Ron to President and gave him an option to purchase 15% of the stock.
For the next 9 years, under Ron’s direction, the company grew to approximately 30 trucks and $5.5MM in annual sales. During this period, Gazelle discovered their niche in crude oil transportation in California.
On April 1, 2004, Ron exercised his option to purchase 15% of the company’s stock and leveraged the equity in the fleet to purchase all of the stock in Gazelle. Ron solidified the company’s mission to become the nation’s premier crude oil transportation company. By November of that year, Gazelle uncovered opportunities to expand business outside of California into Vernal, Utah, a then booming and prolific natural gas producing region of the United States. Over the next 10 years, Gazelle successfully grew operations in six states, including California, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Wyoming, and Utah and earned the distinction as an Inc. 5000 fastest growing company. During this time, Gazelle trademarked the slogan: Safely Delivering America’s Energy® and became a nationally respected and sought after crude oil transportation company. In 2014, fluid management services were added to the company’s service offerings.
In 2015, Gazelle began to feel the effects of the oil industry economic downturn, and Ron, thinking first and foremost about his employees and the preservation of their jobs, made the decision to explore private equity opportunities. On August 31, 2016, after an extensive due diligence process, an investment agreement with EIV Capital, a private equity firm based in Houston, Texas that specializes in the midstream and downstream segments of the energy industry, was signed. Gazelle converted to a Delaware Limited Liability Company and the partnership between Ron and EIV Capital was formed.