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HomeShippingAir TransportationCMA CGM Closes on Takeover of Bolloré Logistics, Its Largest Acquisition Ever

CMA CGM Closes on Takeover of Bolloré Logistics, Its Largest Acquisition Ever

French shipping giant CMA CGM has closed on its acquisition of Bolloré Logistics, after being given final approval by regulatory authorities in the European Union.

The deal had been in the works for some time, with initial talks and intent to acquire Bolloré Logistics stretching back nearly a year, to Spring 2023. The final purchase price was $5.25 billion ($4.85 billion euros).

CMA CGM, founded in 1978, is France’s largest shipper and one of the world’s largest shipping leaders. In recent years, CMA CGM sought to expand and tackle new areas for a more intermodal world. Bolloré Logistics historically has conducted a lot of shipping activity between Europe and the African continent. In addition to global supply chain operations, Bolloré Logistics also specializes in multimodal transport.

The acquisition is CMA CGM’s largest-ever deal, showcasing strategic importance.

Why did CMA CGM choose Bolloré for its largest-ever acquisition?

CMA CGM saw the company as a natural extension of its global conglomerate status. As mentioned, Bolloré specializes in multimodal transport, but it also is doing business in industries that CMA CGM wants a larger footprint in. Bolloré specializes in beauty, cosmetics, healthcare, and other verticals that CMA CGM wants to expand into. CMA CGM has also mentioned multiple times publicly that it wants to grow its business to protect against the wide swings and volatility seen in the shipping industry over the past few years.

How will the deal affect the global logistics industry?

One big effect of CMA CGM’s purchase of Bolloré Logistics will be CMA CGM’s entry into new industries it did not previously specialize in. This will allow the giant to offer new specialized services. Additionally, the acquisition will unlock new routes for CMA CGM, such as some direct routes between Africa and Europe, due to Bolloré’s previous specializations and footprint.

And, crucially, the acquisition and partnership between the new companies will reinforce an investment into air freight, an area of logistics currently in the spotlight due to geopolitical tensions, such as the Red Sea crisis. With some ship-based routes being disrupted, companies are looking into air freight investment to broaden their options. CMA CGM already has CEVA Logistics under its portfolio, and Bolloré will boost air freight operations further.

We will keep our readers updated with further developments on mergers and acquisitions in shipping and logistics as they become available.


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