Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Family Owned Freight Forwarding and Logistics Company Changes Legal Status

Move to Become a 'European Company' May Become the Vogue
Shipping News Feature

EUROPE – The family owned Dachser organisation, headquartered in Germany and dedicated to logistics, has made a significant move which may become more common in European based businesses as time moves on. The freight forwarding and multimodal transport outfit has changed the legal form of its business interests to a Societas Europaea (SE) or European Company as defined by the European Union.

The European Company Statute was implemented in 2004 for companies which run their business activities from more than one EU state, a common case amongst larger logistics providers. It enables a company to move its registered office from one state to another more easily and has ramifications for staff in various countries whilst enabling a single corporate body in the country of choice to control the whole operation with adjustments to the way individual managing companies scattered around the continent behave.

Dachser has chosen to transfer its major business fields Road Logistics (including the European Logistics and Food Logistics Business Lines) and Air & Sea Logistics to the 100%-owned subsidiary Dachser SE. These were previously under the umbrella of Dachser GmbH & Co. KG which now will operate as a holding company called Dachser Group SE & Co. KG. Dachser’s name in the German marketplace will be Dachser SE, but the various names of the country organisations outside of Germany will remain unchanged.

This legal conversion is not tied to any change in the shareholder structure. Dachser management says there is no intention of having an IPO, nor will outside investors acquire any holdings. Dachser CEO Bernhard Simon explained the decision and commented on how the eight decentralised operations will function saying:

"We have altered our legal form to fit our global growth strategy and have therefore opened the way for the future. Dachser is a successful family-owned company and will remain so in the future. The eight operating divisions will reinforce our decentralised business strategy, giving us the ability to be even quicker and more flexible in our decision-making. And once again this will bring us closer to our customers."

The existing Administrative Board will also continue to operate as a supervisory board at Dachser SE with oversight functions. Within Dachser Group SE & Co. KG, the Executive Board and the corporate positions reporting to it will carry out central management and control functions at the global group-wide level. Eight operating divisions, which are led by Managing Directors, will function at the level below the Board within Dachser SE. Aside from Dachser Food Logistics, which Alfred Miller will continue to manage, these units are divided up by region: Germany, North Central Europe, France & Maghreb, and Iberia in the Road Logistics business field, and EMEA, Americas, and Asia Pacific in the Air & Sea Logistics business field.