Ryder specializes in fleet management, supply chain management, and dedicated contracted carriage. Ryder operates in North America, South America, Europe, the United Kingdom and Asia. It has its headquarters in suburban Miami, Florida within Miami-Dade County.
Ryder was founded in Miami, Florida in 1933 by James Ryder as a concrete hauling company with one truck, a 1931 Model "A" Ford. In 1938, Ryder signed a five-truck lease deal with Champagne Velvet Beer, increasing Ryder’s fleet to 20 trucks. By the following year, the fleet grew to more than 50 trucks. This led to Ryder changing its focus from distribution to leasing. Ryder bought Great Southern Trucking Company in 1952. In 1955 Ryder System, Inc. was formed to combine Great Southern and Ryder Truck Rental. Ryder System went public in 1955. By the 1960s and 1970s, Ryder had expanded into the distribution and supply chain markets.
James A. Ryder, founder and chairman, retired in 1978 and died in 1997.
In 2008, Ryder acquired three regional competitors: Pollock, Lily Transportation and Gator Leasing.
In April 2018, Ryder acquired Ohio-based MXD Group, an e-commerce fulfillment and last mile delivery provider with a network of 109 fulfillment centers across the United States and Canada. 
In May 2018, Ryder introduced RyderGyde, a commercial fleet management smartphone app for drivers and fleet managers to monitor and manage their fleets. The app allows customers to view the maintenance status of their vehicles, schedule maintenance appointments and compare fuel rates in real-time. 
Ryder divides its business into three segments: Fleet Management Solutions, Supply Chain Solutions, and Dedicated Transportation Solutions. As of 2017, the total company revenue was $7.3 billion, with earnings before income taxes of $313.79 million.
Ryder's fleet management business is its largest business segment, accounting for 71% of its revenue for a total of $4.4 billion. Profit of $398 million was 86% of the total. This arm of the business does contract-based full-service leasing, contract maintenance, commercial rental and fleet support services. Under full-service leasing Ryder owns and maintains the trucks and the customer decides where they go. In contract maintenance Ryder just takes care of the trucks. Commercial rentals are the white Ryder trucks which the contract customers can rent on a temporary basis. Ryder grew its North American rental fleet to nearly 30,000 vehicles in 2010 and 2011 raising the percentage of model year 2010 or newer vehicles in the fleet to more than 40 percent. Support services consist of insurance, vehicle permits, and fuel.
In April 2011 Ryder bought B.I.T. Leasing, from Hayward, California. Also in 2011 it acquired the full service leasing and rental business of Carmenita Leasing, Inc., located in Santa Fe Springs, California, and the full service lease, contract maintenance, commercial rental and dedicated contract carriage business, The Scully Companies, Inc., based in Fontana, California.
Ryder' supply chain operations accounted for 26% of its revenue for a total of $1.6 billion. Profit of $42 million was 9% of the total. This business consists of management of a customer's supply chain. Ryder managed over 15,000,000 square feet (1,393,546 m2) of warehouse space on December 31, 2008.
Dedicated Transportation Solutions
Ryder Dedicated Transportation Solutions accounted for 8% of its revenue for a total of $0.5 billion. Profit of $49 million was 10% of the total. This arm of the business conducts both leasing and supply chain management. In 2013, Ryder launched a new name and identity for this program called Ryder Dedicated.
Ryder launched a consumer truck-rental operation in 1968 with 1,000 trucks and vans. These were the yellow trucks known as "one-ways" and available for the public to rent from filling stations and other automotive-service locations. In June 1998, Ryder decided to focus on commercial truck rental and leasing, and exited the "one-way" business arena; which it sold to Budget Truck Rental. The white Ryder trucks seen on highways today are available to the general public looking to move locally (returning the truck to the original pick-up location), businesses, and companies that have a contractual agreement with Ryder.
Ryder will launch electric truck rentals in California, and Chicago, Illinois. The trucks will be equipped with 70kWh batteries, which has an estimated range of 100 miles, just under the smallest battery in a Tesla S model.
Previously Ryder had its headquarters in Doral, Florida. In 2002, after taking a year-long study of 22 potential headquarters sites in South Florida, Ryder announced that it would move its headquarters to another location in northwest Miami-Dade County. The commute times of around 200 employees who reside in Broward County decreased. Before the announcement of the final headquarters site, Ryder considered some locations in Miramar in Broward County. In 2005 Shoma Development Corp. began demolishing the former Ryder headquarters in Doral, replacing it with the Park Square at Doral development.
Ryder also has a Shared Services Center in Alpharetta, GA that employs over 500 people and provides support to all FMS Operations.
Headquartered in Miami, Ryder has satellite locations in 48 US States and also in Mexico, Canada, Singapore, China and the United Kingdom.
In December 2011, the non-partisan organization Public Campaign criticized Ryder for spending $0.96 million on lobbying and not paying any taxes during 2008–2010, instead getting $46 million in tax rebates, despite making a profit of $627 million.
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