Trident Transport, a fast-growing freight brokerage and logistics business in Chattanooga, is shifting its headquarters to downtown's riverfront as it plans to add about 125 people in 2022.
The company has bought the 3H Group Building at 505 Riverfront Parkway at Cameron Harbor for $6.2 million where it will relocate from its existing home office on Chestnut Street on the Southside, officials said Thursday.
"We're buying the building, putting roots downtown," said Trident Chief Executive Officer Heath Haley about the 23,000-square-foot structure. "We're here to stay."
Meanwhile, hotel operator 3H Group plans to move its headquarters early next year to a three-story building it's renovating at 27 W. Main St., said CEO Hiren Desai.
Desai said his company plans to invest $6.5 million into that 18,000-square-foot building, which will hold 3H Group as well as local operations for hotel management partner LBA Hospitality and an undisclosed tenant.
"We're bringing something empty into use," he said about the building that formerly held Chuck's II bar.
Trident this year added about 150 people, putting its headcount at 300 with 220 in Chattanooga, said Tim Webb, the company's chief financial officer.
The new employees next year will be hired in the corporate and enterprise divisions with the bulk of them in Chattanooga, he said. The enterprise part of the business, which focuses on its Fortune 500 customers, is growing the fastest, Webb said.
Haley said the company more than doubled its revenue in 2021, though he didn't provide a number. He said he expects a similar result for revenues in 2022.
"Business has been great. All the offices are thriving," the company's CEO said. "The sky's the limit."
Haley cited the strong economy and the way consumers are moving to buying on the internet.
He said the new headquarters keeps workers downtown, where most of them live.
"It shows how much our people mean to us," Haley said. He said the new home office has on-site parking, walkability and proximity to restaurants. Haley said the company is actively hiring on its website.
Robert Maclellan, a real estate broker with NAI Charter who handled the transaction, said the logistics sector is growing rapidly in Chattanooga. The companies like to be downtown because many of their workers are Millennials, who prefer the central city, he said.
Maclellan said the 3H Group Building is along the riverfront and sits at the gateway of The Bend, the massive mixed-use development nearby that's transforming the former Alstom manufacturing site.
In addition, he said many of the properties in the area sit in an Opportunity Zone, an economic development incentive tool for investors.
In October, Chattanooga-based Steam Logistics said it will create 400 jobs in a nearly $7 million expansion into the historic John Ross Building downtown where the company will put its headquarters,
Mark Harrell, Trident's chief operating officer, said the company outgrew its current headquarters and officials liked the Riverfront Parkway site.
"That building's set up is perfect," he said. "We love the area, we love the view."
Harrell said plans are to keep space Trident's leasing in the Knitting Mill on Manufacturers Road.
Desai said 3H Group, which has 21 properties, will temporarily move to space on Heritage Business Court until the Main Street location is ready, likely around March.
Earlier, he had planned to eventually put up about 40 townhouses on the riverfront tract. But Trident approached him about the parcel.
"It was a willing buyer and seller," Desai said. "It was beneficial to both."
Contact Mike Pare at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6318. Follow him on Twitter @MikePareTFP.