Freight forwarding major Kuehne + Nagel (K+N) has announced that it will acquire the overland and logistics activities of Dutch-based Rotra, a company with roughly 800 employees and annual revenue of over €100 million. K+N expects to leverage Rotra’s network to expand its footprint across road networks in all major markets within Europe.
“Rotra is a leading and well-rooted player in the Netherlands and in Belgium – two of the centres of gravity for logistics in Europe,” said Stefan Paul, member of the management board of K+N, responsible for overland freight forwarding.
“Their activities strategically complement K+N’s existing network all over Europe; to the benefit of our local and international customers who will have access to our expanded service portfolio in this region,” he continued.
Though K+N provides logistics services spread across all modes of transport, the company has traditionally been primarily invested in maritime and air freight forwarding. However, the company is making great strides in the overland freight segment by the strategic acquisition of European overland logistics companies.
In July this year, K+N acquired the Jöbstl Group, a mid-tier logistics company based out of Graz, Austria. A family-owned business, Jöbstl processes approximately 550,000 shipments every year and employs around 180 employees across Austria and Slovenia.
Uwe Hott, senior vice president at K+N’s European overland operations, had commented that Jöbstl’s network would further strengthen its existing 130 overland branch offices spread throughout Europe.
Just like Jöbstl, Rotra is a family-owned company that operates a fleet of over 200 trucks, providing logistics connectivity to customers predominantly concentrated in the Netherlands and Belgium. Though Rotra does operate across the sea freight and air freight segments, K+N is only acquiring its overland business.
“After more than a century of growing our family business, the time has now come to offer our customers an even wider road network and a broader range of services. K+N, one of the leading logistics providers worldwide, is our partner of choice to enable further growth and at the same time offering our employees the best future development opportunities,” said Harm Roelofsen, the director and co-owner of Rotra.
As with the Jöbstl acquisition, K+N has not disclosed the price of the Rotra deal. For now, the acquisition is awaiting customary closing conditions like antitrust and merger clearance.
In its third-quarter earnings report, K+N’s CEO Detlef Trefzger had mentioned that the company continued to deliver solid results in both sea freight and overland logistics, even against tense market conditions. He also stated that in the overland segment, the company’s intent was to continue improving its customer service, look at increasing cost efficiency and pursuing greater digitalisation.