Schneider sells portion of logistics business
Schneider Logistics last week said it has arranged to hive off its forwarding and customs brokerage business in the United States and China in a sale to Norbert Dentressangle, a large freight forwarding, road transport and logistics company based in Lyon, France.
The planned sale encompasses seven offices in the United States (San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Miami, Atlanta and New York) and two offices in China (Tianjin and Shanghai) and effectively ends Schneider's ambitions of being a one-stop logistics shop for shippers.
The acquisition, expected to be completed by Oct. 1, is Norbert Dentressangel's first foray into the U.S. market. The French third-party logistics provider had $3.5 billion in sales last year. It has 27,000 employees in 355 locations in 17 countries, operates 7,000 tractors and 9,000 trailers, and manages 5.3 million square meters of warehouse space. It primarily operates on the European continent, with France contributing about half of its revenue.
Norbert made the move to create a new growth opportunity and widen its service offering to current and potential customers, spokesman Thierry Leduc said in an e-mail.
'The acquisition of the Schneider Logistics freight forwarding activities accelerates our development and we have been very interested in the quality of this company, the expertise of the people, the good geographical coverage of the U.S., and the presence in Asia,' he said.
Schneider, a $2.9 billion company based in Green Bay, Wis., said all forwarding and brokerage employees will transfer to Norbert Dentressangle. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The divestiture comes four-and-a-half years after Schneider acquired Southern California-based American Overseas, a freight forwarder, customs broker and warehousing firm, to extend its reach into the intercontinental market and become a global door-to-door logistics provider.
Schneider previously had a presence in Europe and China, but those branches handled continental traffic in those foreign markets.
The logistics subsidiary will now concentrate on its port drayage, transloading and inland logistics management services for U.S. import traffic, which are more directly connected to its domestic trucking and intermodal strengths, as well as supply chain management and its burgeoning trucking and distribution network in China.
'As we continue to refine our enterprise strategy, it has become clear that while freight forwarding and customs brokerage is an exciting business with significant potential, it is not part of the strategic focus on our core truckload, logistics and intermodal services,' said Chris Lofgren, Schneider National chief executive officer, in a statement. Norbert Dentressangle, he said, would be able to invest in people, technology and resources to grow the business. ' Eric Kulisch