Maersk acquires US company Pilot Freight Services

SHIPPING line Maersk has acquired Pilot Freight Services, a US provider of first, mid and last mile freight logistics, adding to its growing ground transportation offerings.

Pilot operates a North American facility-based transportation network of 87 stations and hubs through which freight is transported and distributed to end customers. The company primarily uses third-party trucking providers and has access to controlled capacity. The scope encompasses full truckload (FTL) and less than truckload (LTL) for B2C and B2B distribution, including heavy and bulky shipments.

The combined Pilot and Maersk scale will offer customers approximately 150 facilities across the United States, including distribution centers, hubs and stations.

The move will complement Maersk’s previous acquisitions to provide integrated logistics solutions in North America, including with Performance Team (B2B warehousing and distribution) and Visible SCM (e-commerce parcel warehousing and distribution).

Pilot will add specific new services within the fast-growing large and bulky e-commerce segment, increasing cross-selling opportunities. It will also create significant cost synergies by leveraging the capabilities of different parts of the service solutions.

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Vincent Clerc, CEO of Ocean and Logistics at Maersk, said: “At Maersk, we continue our journey to develop a truly integrated logistics offering for our customers, giving them better visibility, more control and resilience in their supply chains.

“Adding Pilot’s functionality is particularly important as it will allow us to create more attractive solutions for our customers and support them in accelerating the migration to e-commerce.

“Furthermore, it will open up significant cost synergy opportunities by leveraging the capabilities we have already developed in the network,” he said.

Pilot Freight Services CEO Zach Pollock said, “We look forward to joining Maersk. This is the ideal outcome for our customers, our business and our employees who will be able to benefit from the ambitious transformation of simplification and integration of global supply chains which will allow us to act on a broader stage”.

The transaction price is US$1.68 billion, representing an enterprise value of US$1.8 billion.

The acquisition is subject to regulatory review and approval which is expected to be obtained by the second quarter of 2022. The two companies will operate as independent businesses and conduct business as usual until then.

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