TanTara Transportation Corp., started by Michael J. Riggan in 1981 when he purchased his first truck, will be celebrating its 35th anniversary this year. Founded as M.J. Riggan Inc., the name changed in 1987 to TanTara Transportation Corp. — a compilation of the names of Mike and Diane’s two daughters, Tanya and Tara.
“I came to Muscatine in 1979 to work for R.L. Garrett Inc. At that time, the customer base in Muscatine was growing. Having owned my own business prior to moving to Muscatine, it was a natural move to start a new business and grow it here. Not to mention my love of the Mississippi and boating,” said Riggan. “The manufacturing located here and within the 50-mile radius of our community is tremendous. The need for manufacturers to transport their products and our proximity to the major highways is a real benefit to locate in the Muscatine area.”
TanTara mostly provides transportation and logistics services to major manufacturers such as Alcoa, HON, and Monsanto. Their fleet is comprised of four divisions: Flatbed, Dry Van, Liquid Tank, and Over Dimensional. The flatbed trucks haul a lot of steel and aluminum, while the tankers transport bulk liquids such as agricultural chemicals.
The continued growth of the company necessitated a three-phase renovation of the TanTara complex on Stewart Road. Riggan added, “We built this facility in 1995 and 20 years later we have simply outgrown it. We are currently in phase two: an 8,000-square-foot addition to our offices which not only includes additional office space, but a training room, new lounge, showers, and laundry facilities for our drivers. Phase three will include renovating and expanding our maintenance facility. We are proud to use a local contractor and local workers wherever possible.”
Not only is TanTara a family-owned business with Mike’s two sons, Jeff and Dave, along with their partner Matt Hubbs, listed as the future owners in Mike’s succession plan, but TanTara is also a veteran-owned business and reports over 30 percent of employees are veterans as well.
TanTara is a proud community supporter. “Our company has a large financial impact on Muscatine and the surrounding area through the people we employ, wages paid, and the goods and services we purchase from other local companies. Additionally, we are proud to serve the community through our volunteer efforts,” said Riggan. And, as most of us know and celebrate, TanTara is the official carrier of the Iowa Hawkeyes.