Conexio consulting

DFDS has acquired the international business of the giant Turkish logistics company Ekol

DFDS has signed an agreement to acquire the international business of Ekol Logistics, a freight forwarder between Turkey and Europe with offices and facilities in 10 European countries. Ekol Logistics’ international transportation business has 3700 employees and generated revenues of 470 million EUR 2023. The purchase price amounted to 260 million EUR.

With this acquisition, DFDS adds road transportation to its existing Ro-Ro routes in the Mediterranean, extending DFDS’ proven efficient sea-road-road business model in Northern Europe to the region. In addition, DFDS’ logistics network is also being expanded across Europe.

Torben Carlsen, CEO of DFDS, said: “This acquisition is a perfect strategic match for DFDS. “Moving large volumes of trailers reliably and efficiently using a combination of road, sea and rail is our core business. In addition, we believe that Turkey’s role as a manufacturing hub for Europe will be further strengthened in the future as supply chains shift to nearby markets.”

Ahmet Musul, founder and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Ekol Logistics, said, “I am delighted that Ekol Logistics’ international transportation network and all of its talented and dedicated employees will begin a new era with our long-time partner DFDS. This development has the potential to make the transportation infrastructure between Turkey and Europe more efficient and further enhance Turkey’s attractiveness as a manufacturing hub.”

The Turkish-European transportation market is expected to grow on average annually until 2028, supported by the pull of supply chains closer to Europe.

With the addition of Ekol Logistics’ international transportation network, DFDS will be able to offer end-to-end transportation solutions between Turkey and Europe, including distribution services and warehousing, to Turkish companies and European and global manufacturers with production or assembly facilities in Turkey.

Ekol Logistics international transportation business generated revenues of EUR 470 million in 2023. The EBIT margin declined from 4.8% in 2022 to 2.5%. There is a business and integration plan to increase the EBITDA margin to around 5% by 2027.

Subject to EU merger control approval and contractual terms, the acquisition is expected to close in early Q4 2024. On July 28, 2023, it was reported that the transaction was approved by the Turkish Competition Authority.