Family values pay off for Ace Express Freightt

Offering staff a more human work environment has turned Ace Express Freight into a multi-million-euro company

Pictured left to right: John McGrane, The Family Business Network with Julie Tracey and Philip Tracey, Ace Express Freight. Delivering Excellence as the Leading Family Business in Transport and Logistics

In an industry where the focus is often on efficiency and speed, family-owned business Ace Express Freight is going against the grain with their "family first" approach.

This ethos has propelled the company to become a leading player in the freight and logistics sector and was recently recognised at the 2023 Family Business Awards, where they were awarded Gold in the Transport and Logistics Family Business of the Year category.

For CEO and founder Philip Tracey, the success of Ace Express Freight is more than just the numbers – it lies in the company's strong family values.

These values have been ingrained in every aspect of the business since its inception nearly 35 years ago and have played a crucial role in the company's growth and success.

Fact File

Organisation’s name: Ace Express Freight

Number of employees: 150

Turnover: €35 million

Why it’s in the news: Winning Gold in the Transport and Logistics Family Business of the Year category

Based in Lusk, Co. Dublin, Ace Express Freight has become a household name in the freight and logistics industry.

The company, with a staff of close to 150, is also a proud member of the world's largest network of independent freight forwarders, WCAworld.

Still under the management of founder Tracey, with daughter Louise currently working through all divisions to familiarise herself with the business, the company continues to thrive and expand.

Central to Ace Express Freight's success is their unique approach to customer service – a direct reflection of their family values. This approach has helped the company achieve customer excellence.

“We operate an open-door policy, which allows anyone to contact me directly, whether they are staff, customers, partners, or suppliers,” Tracey comments.

“This makes it easy for customers to do business with us – and in fact some customers have been with us for over 20 years now.”

We prioritise creating a caring and human work environment for our staff, where ‘family comes first’

But the commitment to family values isn't just limited to their customers – it extends to their employees as well.

“We prioritise creating a caring and human work environment for our staff, where ‘family comes first’,” says Tracey.

This policy is evident in Ace Express Freight’s annual "Living the Values Awards," where staff members who embody the company's core values are recognised and rewarded.

Being a family business has proven to be advantageous for Ace Express Freight, especially during times of economic uncertainty.

The company's lean and agile structure allows them to make quick decisions and pivot when needed – a crucial factor in the current economic climate.

“As an example, we were offered a warehouse in December 2022,” Tracey says.

Completed the deal

“We swiftly completed the deal, signed the paperwork, and fitted out the warehouse within six months, despite facing challenges such as an 11-month waiting list for forklifts. This ability to adapt quickly is a clear advantage of being a family business.”

Looking towards the future, Ace Express Freight has ambitious growth plans in place. To ensure their employees are aligned with these goals, the company conducted a survey using Net Promoter Score Metrics to assess staff satisfaction.

The results were outstanding, with a score of 37, indicating a highly positive work environment.

From a business perspective, Ace Express Freight is also on a successful trajectory. “This year we have achieved a turnover of €35 million,” Tracey says, “but I have set a target of reaching €50 million.

“Our goal is to continue thriving and becoming even more successful in the industry. As we like to say, now that would be ACE!"