DB Schenker to be sold as a complete unit and not split up

Photo: DB Schenker

Deutsche Bahn will sell its logistics business, DB Schenker, as a complete unit rather than splitting it up into smaller units.

Air Cargo News sister title DVZ reported that the Deutsche Bahn supervisory board was this week told that after months of examining various options, a complete sale was the most sensible.

The board will now seek to obtain concrete offers for the company but there is no specific timetable for the sale and it is not expected to be a short-term project.

The proceeds from the sale will be kept within the state-owned Deutsche Bahn group, DVZ reports.

Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing made a similar statement to the Hamburg business journalists’ club on Monday when he ruled out a partial sale.

It has now been nine months since Deutsche Bahn announced it would assemble a team to examine the potential sale of up to 100% of DB Schenker, the world’s fourth-largest airfreight forwarder.

The company reasoned that selling its forwarding business would allow it to sharpen its focus on its Strong Rail Strategy and core rail business.

It added that while DB Schenker has achieved record results in recent times, in the medium term the company will require larger financial resources and more independence to make international acquisitions with a view to retaining and enhancing its market position.

“For this reason, a sale could open up new opportunities for DB Schenker in terms of growth and development,” Deutsche Bahn said.

“The company’s position as a global market leader makes it attractive for buyers and investors,” it added. “In light of the economic challenges being faced worldwide and current uncertainty on the capital markets, DB does not want to rush a possible sale of DB Schenker.”

There has been speculation for a number of years that Deutsche Bahn could sell its freight forwarding subsidiary.

Deutsche Post-owned DHL Global Forwarding is one company that could potentially be interested in buying DB Schenker.

Danish forwarder DSV has also previously expressed interest in purchasing the forwarder.

Last year, DB Schenker reported record earnings before interest and tax (ebit) of €1.8bn – an increase of almost 50% compared with the previous record achieved in 2021.

Meanwhile, total revenues increased by 20.3% to €27.6bn and airfreight volumes were down 7.8% to 1.3m tonnes.

In the first six months of this year, the forwarder generated a “significant” operating profit of €626m despite declines in ocean and airfreight rates.

Deutsche Bahn prepares for the sale of DB Schenker

Deutsche Bahn mulls DB Schenker sale options

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Damian Brett

Damian Brett
I have been writing about the freight and logistics industry since 2007 when I joined International Freighting Weekly to cover the shipping sector.After a stint in PR, I have gone on to work for Containerisation International and Lloyds List - where I was editor of container shipping - before joining Air Cargo News in 2015.Contact me on [email protected]