EXCLUSIVE The automobile transport company Gefco puts on sale -sources
FRANKFURT, June 23 (Reuters) – Car transport company Gefco has been put up for sale by owners Russian Railways (RZhD) and automaker Stellantis (STLA.MI) in a deal estimated at more than $ 2 billion euros ($ 2.39 billion), people familiar with the matter said.
The owners are working with JP Morgan (JPM.N) and Rothschild (ROTH.PA) on the divestiture, they said, adding that potential buyers had already been invited to register their interest.
Gefco, its owners and the banks declined to comment.
Gefco is expected to post earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of 345 million euros on sales of 4.4 billion euros this year, one of the sources said.
In 2020, plant and concession closures and consumer purchasing delays due to the pandemic resulted in a 20% drop in revenue to € 3.8 billion, while EBIT recurring fell 32% to 140 million.
Auto markets have since rebounded and European car registrations jumped 74% in May, increasing for the third consecutive month.
Stellantis remains Gefco’s main customer, accounting for about half of its revenue, and has already announced that it will scale back its business with Gefco, weighing on the valuation of the company, the people said.
While many listed logistics counterparts are trading at more than 10 times their expected basis earnings, Gefco is expected to be valued at much less than 10 times, one of the sources said.
The French group PSA sold a 75% stake in Gefco to Russian railways in 2012 for 800 million euros. PSA renamed Stellantis last year after its merger with FCA.
Founded in 1949, Gefco employs 11,500 people in 47 countries. He tried to float on Euronext in 2019, but had to abandon his plans due to mixed interest from investors.
The company sells transportation services to Stellantis, Ford, Renault, Skoda and Toyota, but also to other companies such as Nestlé and Electrolux.
In September, a global cyberattack on Gefco made headlines and Gefco said in its annual report released in May that it had made significant progress in deploying a new IT system.
Stellantis chief executive Carlos Tavares has said he will present a business plan for Stellantis in late 2021 or early 2022, as he strives to meet a synergy target of more than € 5 billion. per year.
Stellantis introduced the French used car group Aramis this month.
Russian Railways, which initially planned to expand its logistics activities after the takeover of Gefco, changed course a few years later by selling the Russian rail logistics container operator Transcontainer.
($ 1 = 0.8370 euros)
Additional reporting by Giulio Piovaccari, Gilles Guillaume and Gleb Stolyarov; edited by Jason Neely
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