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CMA CGM acquisition expands European last-mile delivery footprint

CEVA Logistics will add a majority share of France-based e-commerce company Colis Privé to its last-mile European offering. Photo credit: CEVA Logistics.

CMA CGM has acquired a majority stake in European last-mile logistics specialist Colis Privé, a parcel delivery company part-owned by Amazon. It’s the carrier’s second e-commerce deal in as many months as it pursues its strategy of expanding end-to-end movement of goods within its controlled network.

The agreement between CMA CGM’s CEVA Logistics unit and Colis Privé’s parent company Hobbs Group gives CEVA 51 percent of Colis with the option to raise its ownership stake in future. Other terms of the deal were not disclosed. Colis Privé is 10 percent owned by Amazon, one of its main customers.

The deal follows CMA CGM’s $3 billion purchase agreement in December for the commerce and lifecycle services business of US-based contract logistics and e-commerce specialist Ingram Micro. The US deal accelerates CEVA Logistics’ development in key market segments, such as technology, retail, and fashion.

While the business of Colis Privé is currently confined to France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Morocco, with activities soon to begin in the Netherlands, CMA CGM intends to expand outside Europe.

“By leveraging the global presence of our subsidiary CEVA Logistics, our ambition is to develop Colis Privé internationally, starting with Europe where the company is already established,” Rodolphe Saadé, chairman and CEO of the CMA CGM Group, said in a statement.

“The acquisition of a majority stake in Colis Privé is an important step in the development strategy of our logistics activities,” he added. “This operation will enable us to offer end-to-end logistics solutions to our e-commerce customers for whom the last mile is a critical stage.”

The majority share will give CEVA Logistics access to a Colis Privé customer portfolio of more than 200 e-commerce companies, which CMA CGM said includes “international market leaders.”

It will also support air freight shipments as the carrier rapidly expands its CMA CGM Air Cargo business. The air cargo division was launched in February 2021 using two Airbus 330-200 freighters purchased from Qatar Airways; that was followed by orders for two new Boeing 777 freighters in September and for four Airbus 350 new generation freighter aircraft in November.

Colis Privé was scheduled to launch an initial public offering (IPO) in France in July 2021 but postponed the listing because of unfavorable market conditions.

Completion of the deal with CMA CGM will depend on clearance from the relevant regulatory authorities.