French shipping group CMA CGM said it has acquired nearly 100% of automotive transport and logistics company GEFCO, previously co-owned by Russian Railways (RZD) and carmaker Stellantis.

The acquisition has been submitted to competition authorities for approval. However, as part of a special procedure, CMA CGM had been authorised by the European Commission to acquire GEFCO’s capital immediately, pending final approval of the deal expected in the coming months, it said in a statement without disclosing financial details.

GEFCO would allow CMA CGM’s logistics division CEVA to become a market leader in auto transport and reinforce its presence in France and Europe, CMA CGM said.

Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and CEO of the CMA CGM Group commented, “The acquisition of GEFCO represents a further step in our development strategy and strengthens our position as a global player in transport and logistics. With GEFCO, our subsidiary CEVA will become the world leader in automotive logistics, having recently enhanced its capabilities in e-commerce logistics with the acquisition of Ingram Micro CLS. We are creating a French leader to serve our customers around the world.”

The CMA CGM Group’s intention is for GEFCO to continue operating in a secure regulatory framework, then to boost its development, especially in international markets, by harnessing the Group’s market-leading technology and logistics capabilities. GEFCO will benefit in the future from CEVA Logistics’ expertise and network, enabling it to expand both its business and its customer portfolio.

Luc Nadal, GEFCO’s CEO commented, “With more than 70 years of expertise in industrial logistics, GEFCO is proud to join the CMA CGM Group, an undisputed world leader in maritime shipping and logistics. The project led by CMA CGM will allow GEFCO to continue our activity in a stable environment, will support the transformation we have initiated and will strengthen our development in the years to come. This link between two French companies will bring many opportunities for GEFCO in terms of innovation and sustainable growth, particularly internationally, for the benefit of our customers.”

“I am proud of the work accomplished by all of the GEFCO teams around the world on behalf of our customers, and I am confident in the future with CMA CGM and CEVA Logistics.”

GEFCO had announced last week it would buy back the 75% of its shares held by RZD after the state-owned company became the target of Western sanctions.

Stellantis confirmed in a separate statement it had sold its remaining 25% stake in GEFCO to CMA CGM.

France’s PSA group, which last year merged with Fiat Chrysler to form Stellantis, fully owned GEFCO until 2012, when it sold a 75% stake to RZD for 800 million euros (US$869 million).

“The sale of this non-strategic asset marks the last step of our exit plan, initiated a decade ago, from the transportation and logistics industry,” Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said in the statement.

French media last week reported that, following the exit of RZD, the business would likely be acquired by CMA CGM, which has invested heavily in non-maritime logistics in recent years alongside container shipping, its core activity.

With the deal to acquire GEFCO, the CMA CGM Group is moving forward with its plan to develop and provide end-to-end shipping and logistics solutions in order to support its customers’ supply chains.

The Group recently announced the completion of the acquisition of Ingram Micro’s Commerce & Lifecycle Services (CLS) and of Colis Privé. These deals have accelerated the development of CEVA Logistics in e-commerce and in key market segments, such as technology, retail and fashion.


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