Increase of capital in B Logistics and strengthening of the financial structure of 96m€
Brussels, 7 October 2015 – Argos Wityu and SNCB have completed the increase of capital in B Logistics, which has been announced on 30 March 2015. With this increase of capital and the social policy agreement concluded earlier this week, all the preconditions are met for B Logistics to speed up its growth and profitability. Leader of the “modal shift” 1 in Belgium, the company continues fully its development through a high performing product & service offering, innovations and a dynamic, customer-oriented organisation.
The investment funds managed by Argos Wityu have invested €20.7 million in B Logistics and thus acquired 68.9% of the company’s capital. In addition to Argos Wityu, SNCB remains present in the capital of B Logistics for the remaining shares. At the same time, B Logistics has obtained long-term bank financing to the tune of €50 million, while SNCB has converted a subordinated loan of €25 million in capital for the benefit of B Logistics.
In all, this operation means a strengthening of the financial structure of nearly €96 million for B Logistics. The company thus has the liquid resources and balance sheet structure to realise its objectives.
In order to convince (potential) customers to opt for rail more often, B Logistics is creating innovative and high performing rail services that respond to their needs. This year, B Logistics launched the Green Xpress Network, a European network of fast, reliable and direct rail links between European hubs.
Geert Pauwels, CEO of B Logistics: “To accelerate the modal shift to rail, we must make freight transport by rail as user-friendly, flexible and attractive as the other modes of transport. We are consequently focusing on developing an innovative, rapid and reliable product offer, a strong, customer-oriented organisation and technological innovations.”
The shareholders of B Logistics fully support the company’s strategy.
Gilles Mougenot, President of Argos Wityu Partners: “We share the values and objectives of B Logistics: focus on growth, autonomy, entrepreneurship, innovation and corporate social responsibility. Recent history has shown that the management and staff of B Logistics invariably manage to turn their plans to reality. We are delighted to be able to provide support to the company for its further development.”
Jo Cornu, CEO, SNCB: “I am convinced that, thanks to the new partner, B Logistics gets every chance to further expand successfully into freight transport. As a shareholder, I have full trust and confidence that a fruitful future lies ahead for B Logistics as an innovative European logistics player.”
B Logistics: Veerle Van Mierlo
Tel: + 32 472 92 02 29
SNCB: Thierry Ney
Tel: + 32 491 72 45 17
Argos Wityu: Baudouin Velge (Interelgroup)
Tel: + 32 475 30 12 11
About B Logistics ( www.blogistics.be )
SNCB Logistics s.a. became operational as an autonomous rail freight operator on 1 February 2011. Since 7 October 2015, the shareholders are Argos Wityu (68.9%) and SNCB (31.1%). B Logistics develops rail solutions for companies and large industrial groups, operating block trains for conventional and inter-modal loads and providing single wagon load transport throughout Europe. As one of the largest European private rail freight operators, B Logistics has the ambition to speed up the modal shift towards rail. To that end, B Logistics endeavours continuously to improve safety, quality, productivity, cost efficiency, as well as to optimise its service level and to develop a reliable, competitive and innovative product offering and technological innovations. The group, headquartered in Brussels, offers employment to about 1900 people and owns a fleet of about 200 locomotives and 7000 wagons. B Logistics is responsible for rail production in Belgium and the surrounding countries, and calls on reliable partners for international rail transport where needed. Subsidiaries IFB, an inter-modal operator, Xpedys, largely integrated within B Logistics, and OSR France, a rail freight operator active in France, are part of the group.
About SNCB (www.SNCB.be)
SNCB is a Belgian public company which operates and commercialises both domestic and international rail passenger traffic. It also manages its own rolling stock. Furthermore, it operates a network of train stations and stops, including parking lots, bicycle lots and spaces to rent bicycles. It also looks after the security of its railway domain. It numbers some 20,000 employees.
About Argos Wityu ( www.argos-soditic.com )
Created in 1989, Argos Wityu is an independent European Private Equity firm with offices in Milan, Paris, Geneva and Brussels. Argos Wityu focuses on management buy-outs, buy-ins, Bimbo, spin-off, in small and medium-sized companies. The group of funds managed by the firm typically takes majority stakes ranging from €10m to €60m in companies with revenues of €20m to €400m. Since its creation, Argos Wityu has carried out more than 60 transactions focusing on management buy-outs and buy-ins in small and medium-sized companies. The firm has developed a track record of unusual, complex and off-market transactions where the firm’s combination of local presence and international experience is able to add value to the small and medium-sized businesses it invests in.
- Financial counsel: LAZARD (Thierry Le Grelle, Daan Van Parys)
- Legal counsel : EUBELIUS (Erwin Destuyver, Hans Gilliams, Jereon Delvoie)
Argos Wityu (Deal team: Gilles Mougenot, Richard Reis, Maarten Meijssen, Simon Guichard)
- Legal counsel : LIEDEKERKE (Damien Conem, Peter De Bou, Laeticia Seeber)
- Strategy DD: ROLAND BERGER (Grégoire Tondreau, Alain d’Oultremont, Thibaud Mezosy)
- Financial DD : PWC (Philippe Fimmers, Michael De Roover)
- Sales DD: PWC (Tom Vermeiren)
- Operational & IT DD: PWC (Steven Vermeylen)
- Tax DD: PWC (Jan Muyldermans)
- Environment DD: ERM (Ruud Klein)
- Insurance DD: AON (Bart Goossens)
- Legal counsel : ALLEN & OVERY (Wouter Van de Voorde)
- Financial counsel: NAVIUS
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