Eimskip acquires 90 per cent stake in Netherlands-based Extraco

03 November 2016 Consultancy.uk 3 min. read

Iceland-headquartered Eimskip has acquired nearly all of the shares of Extraco, a Dutch freight forwarding and reefer logistics services provider, and Nor Lines, a Norwegian player with around 200 employees.

Eimskip, an abbrevaition for Eismkipafélag Islands, was founded in 1914 in Iceland. Over the past century the shipping company has grown into a global player, today running a network of 20 vessels, managed by around 1,600 employees across 50+ offices in 19 countries. 

In line with the firm's growth ambitions – President and CEO Gylfi Sigfússon early this year unveiled plans aimed at bolstering Eimskip's footprint in European markets – the company is working on the execution of its M&A strategy. Sigfússon recently highlighted that several accretive acquisitions would be made across the continent in the coming months, with the first deal in the announced series, the acquisition of Extraco, closed last month.

Established in 1991, Extraco services importers of chilled and frozen commodities in the Netherlands, as well as provides import handling, warehousing, custom brokerage and distribution of bulk, chilled and frozen commodities in Europe. The company's annual turnover amounts to approximately €19 million, generated by a team of 19 professionals located in an office close to the port of Rotterdam.

Eimskip buys 90 of Netherlands-based Extraco

With the move, Eimskip, which was provided M&A support and financial advisory by Baker Tilly's local Corporate Finance arm, significantly expands its presence in the Dutch market – one of Europe's larger logistical hubs for sea freight. The Iceland-headquartered firm fist set foot on Dutch soil in 1985, and prior to the transaction operated in the country with operations in Rotterdam and Vlissingen. Sigfússon comments on the acquisition, "The synergies, increased diversification and the valuable experience of Extraco's employees will help us to further strengthen our forwarding operation in the Netherlands."

As part of the deal, Extraco will move into Eimskip's office in Rotterdam, with the firm's employees and the majority of the current management team to stay on board. The acquired arm will form a reefer logistics center, joining forces with the other Eimskip identities in the Netherlands (European Transport Services; Eimskip Reefer Logistics and Jac. Meisner).

Reflecting on the decision to divest 90% of the company (the remaining 10% share is retained by Extraco's management) to the Icelanders, Dick de Weerdt, Managing Director of Extraco, says "We have decided to join the Eimskip group of companies because it our firm belief that our customers will benefit from Eimskip's extensive logistics and shipping network."

Yesterday Eimskip revealed another acquisition, that of Nor Lines, a Norwegian shipping and logistics company with a team of about 200 employees and a total income of close to €110 million.

Sigfússon concludes: "The company's vision is to provide outstanding transportation services through a dependable transport system in the North Atlantic and an extensive worldwide network of reefer logistics services. These are the first of several acquisitions that Eimskip will make in core markets."