Mergers and Acquisitions Continue, Worldwide

Looking to build a foundation for further growth in both the US and international freight markets, New Zealand’s global logistics supplier, Mainfreight Ltd., will spend $53.7 million to acquire US-based Target Logistics. Ranked as one of New Zealand’s top 20 companies, Mainfreight has 3,000 employees based in that country, Australia, Asia and the US. Target Logistics offers domestic and international time-definite freight forwarding and logistics services. It has 335 offices within the US as well as a worldwide network of agents that cover more than 70 countries. The deal is expected to close in November.

Adding drivers and equipment and extending the reach of its flatbed business, West Motor Freight has acquired Sanger Trucking LLC. "Adding capacity allows us to be more responsive to our customers who recognize the value in this expansion," says Bob Petruzzi, West president. "We will continue to grow our fleet organically, and, when the right opportunities exist, through acquisition. Sanger Trucking brings a professional team of drivers and customers, both of which merge well with our flatbed business." West focuses on the Middle Atlantic, New England and Atlantic states with its van and flatbed services.

Hub Group’s subsidiary, Comtrak Logistics, Inc., is acquiring DNJ Transportation, Inc. for $12.1 million. DNJ is a trucking company with primary focus on international drayage in the intermodal market. Approximately 70 of DNJ’s 116 drivers are owner-operators. With headquarters in Cicero, the company has four terminals located in Illinois and Indiana. In commenting on the acquisition, David P. Yeager, Hub's CEO, said, "We are excited about adding DNJ to our Comtrak drayage business. DNJ's international intermodal business will provide us with immediate growth in this key market. The acquisition is consistent with our strategic plan to increase the amount of drayage we perform."

Looking to grow its domestic air and expedited capabilities C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc., one of the world’s largest non-asset based third party logistics suppliers, has acquired the operations of and certain assets of LXSI Services, a provider of domestic air and expedited services. Not only does the acquisition deepen Robinson’s core capabilities, it adds customers in key vertical markets, including finance, entertainment, medicine and print manufacturing. “LXSI Services is a great fit for our expansion plans. Our customers have shown a growing demand for air and expedited services,” says Mark Walker, C.H. Robinson vice president, “and LXSI brings management depth, skilled employees, and domestic air and expedited knowledge, all of which will be necessary for us to expand this service into a core offering.”

China’s COSCO is buying the world’s largest dry bulk fleet for $RMB 35.6 billion (US $4.7 billion). The integrated shipping provider will acquire total equity in the bulk shipping assets of COSCO Group (COSCO Bulk Carrier Co., Qungdao Ocean Shipping Co., Golden View Investment and Shenzhen Ocean Shipping Co.). With the acquisition, the carrier’s fleet will grow from 144 vessels to 556 with capacity growth from 5.68 DWT (Deadweight Tonnage) to 37.7 DWT. With the additional assets China COSCO will broaden its offerings as an integrated shipping company with container and dry bulk shipping, logistics, port terminal operations and container leasing.

The acquisition of UK-based GF-X(Global Freight Exchange Ltd.) by Descartes Systems Group adds electronic air freight booking capability that creates a global network for managing the entire air cargo shipment lifecycle. The combined company will provide shippers with the ability to electronically manage bookings, air waybills, house waybills, status messages and customs fillings. Descartes offerings include the ability to manage shipping rates from initial booking trough invoice presentation, bill of lading rating and audits. “In combining with GF-X,” claims Art Mesher, Descartes CEO, ‘we now have a customer-endorsed, comprehensive shipment management service that standardizes and automates the entire shipment management process and can improve efficiencies for the air freight community.”

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