Suddath departs UniGroup to rejoin Atlas network

Suddath Moving & Storage, a subsidiary of The Suddath Companies, has announced it is rejoining the Atlas Agent network after parting ways with UniGroup.

The business – which was an Atlas Agent and shareholder from 1950 to 1981 – made the announcement in a joint statement with Atlas Van Lines.

The statement said: ‘Suddath’s return to the Atlas Agent family was a logical decision for both organisations given their symmetry and shared goals. Atlas and Suddath are aligned on culture, branding, values, corporate responsibility, and environmental, social, and governance in support of a more diverse, inclusive workplace.’

Mike Brannigan, President and CEO of The Suddath Companies, said: ‘Household goods continues to be a critical part of Suddath’s core business, and partnering with Atlas will help us accelerate our growth strategy, especially in the corporate, B2C, and military relocation segments.

‘We are excited to pair Suddath with a van line that brings capability, quality, and flexibility to its Agent-centric business model. We have long admired that Atlas actively seeks Agent engagement and input, from processes to technology, to ensure there is alignment across the enterprise supporting and maintaining its core vision and culture. We look forward to a very successful, long-term partnership with Atlas.’

Jack Griffin, Chairman and CEO of Atlas World Group, said: ‘Suddath coming home to Atlas brings two highly regarded brands back together in the moving industry and further positions Atlas as an industry-leading van line. Atlas offers Suddath flexibility and stability, while Suddath brings vast capabilities that directly align with Atlas’ daily operations and long-term vision. We are pleased to welcome Suddath back home and into our Agent family and remain committed to the highest level of success for our agents, professional van operators, customers, and employees.’

Meanwhile, a UniGroup Board of Directors letter to shareholders and agency owners said The Suddath Companies had announced its intention to depart UniGroup on February 4. It said this was a ‘violation of its agency agreement and commitment to remain a member until December 31, 2024’.  

The letter said UniGroup had therefore terminated Suddath’s agency agreements, and was carrying out its termination response plan while ‘pursuing all rights and remedies available to our network’.

While this transition would be ‘administratively burdensome in the short term, we are well positioned to respond and confident in our plans for the future’, it said, adding that the departure gave ‘immediate opportunities for growth and collaboration among current members of our cooperative, especially when it comes to residential, national account and RMC business’.

UniGroup was notifying all affected customers, adding it was committed to honouring existing contracts with United Van Lines and Mayflower Transit. A formal statement is expected this week. 

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