Deutsche Bahn Starts Sale of €20 Billion Schenker Logistics Unit


Deutsche Bahn AG started the sales process for its DB Schenker logistics unit, which could be valued at as much as €20 billion ($21.3 billion), to a financial investor or rival logistics company.

“DB Schenker has contributed very positively to the DB Group’s economic growth over the years,” the state-backed German railroad operator said Tuesday. “However, the DB subsidiary will need more capital and flexibility for its own growth.”

Deutsche Bahn said a year ago it will explore a sale of DB Schenker and already hived off its Arriva transport business in October. Asset sales would help the German firm slash debt and generate funds to modernize its domestic railroad operations, the company said Tuesday.

Deutsche Bahn selected banks including Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Morgan Stanley and Deutsche Bank AG to advise on the potential sale unit, Bloomberg reported in March.

Schenker is likely to attract bids from rival logistics companies. Danish transport giant DSV A/S has stated that it’s ready for deals and signaled previously it would be interested in buying the Schenker business if the German state decides to sell. Other potential suitors in the industry could include Germany’s DHL Group, Switzerland’s Kuehne + Nagel International and MSC Mediterranean Shipping Co SA. as well as AP Moeller Maersk AS and the Abu Dhabi’s ADQ.

Carlyle Group Inc. and CVC Capital Partners have held talks about making a joint bid and buyout firms including Advent International, Bain Capital as well as Blackstone Inc. may also be interested, Bloomberg has previously reported. The ability of private equity firms to do such a big acquisition will also depend on the state of the financing markets.


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