Thursday, April 12, 2018

Shipping and Logistics Group Buys RoRo Ferry and Intermodal Freight Operator

Two Port Terminals and Twelve Ships Acquired in Near Billion Euro Deal
Shipping News Feature
DENMARK – TURKEY – Danish shipping and logistics group DFDS has signed an agreement to acquire 98.8% of the shares in the RoRo freight firm, UN Ro-Ro from Turkish private equity companies Actera and Esas for a price of €950 million. UN Ro-Ro operates five routes connecting Italy and France with Turkey, and owns12 ships plus two port terminals in Italy and Turkey. Niels Smedegaard, CEO and President of DFDS, commented:

"Turkey's economy is the world's eighteenth largest. Trade with the EU is extremely dynamic. Since UN Ro-Ro was founded in 1994, seaborne trade has continued to take market shares from road transport where congestion, border controls and customs formalities hinder the flow. Today, 55% of the trade is seaborne, and the share continues to grow, benefitting not least UN Ro-Ro, which is the major operator in this market."

UN Ro-Ro, which employs around 500 people, operates those five major routes between Turkey and the EU connecting the Turkish ports of Pendik, Ambarli and Mersin with Trieste and Bari in Italy, Toulon in France and Patras in Greece. The company operates and owns a fleet of a dozen large Ro-Ro vessels and operates port terminals in Pendik, Istanbul, and Trieste in Italy. In cooperation with rail operators, UN Ro-Ro also offers intermodal transport between key EU markets and the ports.

Many of the trailers and containers transported between manufacturers and their customers via France and Italy will be using DFDS ferries in the Channel and in the North Sea. Smedegaard, continued:

"The operation of Ro-Ro ships and operation of port terminals handling a high number of unaccompanied trailer units, and containers for reloading to rail transport in the ports, are very similar to DFDS' business in the North Sea. So are the goods transported, machinery, automotive parts, vehicles, electronics, computers, plastic products, textiles, clothing, food, fruit, beverages and other commodities.

"UN Ro-Ro is a highly profitable company, and we are confident that joining forces will create new exciting opportunities as we can expand services to new customers and combine the two sales organisations. I look very much forward to welcoming UN Ro-Ro to DFDS. I am also very pleased that the skilled and professional management of UN Ro-Ro have decided to stay with us and help us ensure that all our current and new employees and customers benefit from this."

The transaction is subject to the approval of the relevant authorities. DFDS expects the transaction to be completed by June 2018.