Client spotlight: Emmanuel Carrillo, Talon Logistics

September 07, 2023 | 5 minute readEn español

A man standing next to a blue semi truck

Emmanuel Carrillo didn’t expect to become a company owner while juggling night shifts as a dispatcher at Talon Logistics, a trucking transportation company in Eastvale, California—and taking classes at California Baptist University to earn his associate and bachelor’s degrees in business administration.


But when Talon Logistics’ CEO stepped down in 2020, Carrillo was offered the opportunity to take on that role — and jumped at the chance. “You see a door open, and though you never know what’s on the other side of the door, you walk through it,” he says. As a first-generation American and child of Mexican immigrants, Carrillo saw the opportunity as a chance to build a better, more financially secure life for his family. One of the most traumatic memories of his childhood was when his mother, a school bus driver, and father, who worked as a trucker and security guard, lost the home where the family of five lived.


Carrillo eventually arranged to buy Talon Logistics, established in 2007, using his own savings. Today, the business provides nationwide freight logistic solutions to corporations such as StarKist, CJ Logistics, Hamburg Süd, Bumble Bee and Maersk. In addition to servicing Southern California, the company has expanded to Texas, Georgia and South Carolina, with plans for additional regions this year. The company is part of a family of brands that include Talon Freight Solutions, a full-service brokerage company, and ALC yards, a storage company that addresses clients’ storage requirements and helps to alleviate pressure from steamship lines, beneficial cargo owners, warehouses and drivers nationwide.


Carrillo says his supportive and dedicated team has helped him grow the company. A key member of that team has been Bank of America Small Business Banker and Assistant Vice President David Navarro, based in Corona, California, who quickly recognized Carrillo’s vision and drive. Although Bank of America is a big bank, Carrillo says Navarro gave him a lot of one-on-one attention. Through this relationship, he saw that the bank was willing to go beyond its role as a lender and was interested in partnering in his business’s expansion. He also liked using the bank’s tools, such as the Cash Flow Monitor, to keep track of his financials. “Growing a company is a complicated and ongoing process,” says Carrillo. “In addition to my team, having BOA as a supportive and strategic partner for all of our business needs has made, and continues to make, a difference in Talon’s success.”


That relationship came in handy when the company needed more space. Navarro assisted Carrillo with financing a move to a new, 8,000-square-foot office, situated on 1.5 acres, providing insight into the company’s financial situation and how a loan could benefit them. “After consulting with the client and understanding what his needs and priorities were, I was able to recommend financing to secure a new lease and complete the necessary tenant improvements,” says Navarro. Carrillo received $350,000 in financing for Talon Logistics in February 2023, which gave him the wherewithal for any future expansion.


A chance for a more secure life

Talon has been expanding quickly in recent years, and today has 22 employees. For the past four years, the company has seen year-over-year revenue growth of 38%-44% and is profitable. Along the way, the company has earned a Minority Business Enterprise certification from the National Minority Supplier Management Council. Carrillo’s wife and business partner Abby Carrillo, director of administration, has played a prominent role in helping the company grow.


The bedrock of Talon’s growth has been building strong relationships, not only with its customers but also with its employees. Carrillo strongly believes in making time to mentor his drivers and teach them about business, while also acknowledging the importance of even small signs of support, like taking them out to lunch when he can. As a result of extra efforts like these, Talon Logistics has been awarded a Great Place To Work® certification—with 95% of its team agreeing it deserves this distinction.


The company’s relationships with clients are equally strong. Talon Logistics is known for its clear communication with clients and quick response time. Using the latest technology, it provides detailed weekly reporting on shipments. “With a stark lack of communication in the industry, it was clear that we had to step in to offer effective, transparent services that instilled confidence in our customers,” says Carrillo.


Carrillo has also taken steps to create a more environmentally friendly company. He has begun to transition Talon’s trucking fleet to electric vehicle (EV) rigs to have less of an environmental impact and meet California’s 2035 deadline for zero emissions, consulting with Navarro on the transition. The company expects to lease 10 new trucks for daytime transport, known as day cabs, by 2024.


“One of our current goals is to convert our entire fleet of trucks from diesel to electric,” explains Carrillo. “We’re very excited about our recent purchase of our first EV truck and charging station and our plans for a second. We’ve also recently hired additional office staff and plan to hire more drivers.”


With the company humming, Carrillo is keeping his focus on growth. Although his childhood is far behind, the financial insecurity he experienced in his youth still drives him to succeed. “I know how hard my parents worked and that they tried their best, and that inspires me to always strive to do better, in order to provide a better life for my family,” he says.


To learn how we can help, make an appointment with a Bank of America small business banker.

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