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US and French Giants Battle for UK's Last Haulage Firm

GXO, a logistics conglomerate based in the United States, has made overtures to Wincanton regarding a potential acquisition bid, which could disrupt a previously agreed proposal from France's CEVA Logistics, according to Sky News.



Mark Kleinman, City Editor, reported on Monday, 26 February 2024, that GXO, having acquired Clipper Logistics in 2022 in a transaction valued at nearly £1 billion, is now considering a bid for Wincanton, one of the UK's leading logistics firms. This move could potentially interfere with a £600 million acquisition by a French rival.


Wincanton, which serves notable clients such as Asda, Sainsbury's, and Waitrose, and employs 20,000 people across the UK, disclosed in a stock exchange announcement on Monday morning that it had been approached by an unnamed third party, later identified by industry insiders as GXO.


The implications of a takeover by GXO, in terms of competition, remain uncertain.


Wincanton had previously accepted a takeover offer from CEVA Logistics, a French logistics entity with a modest presence in the UK.


Following this, Wincanton announced it had received an improved final offer from CEVA, with the board unanimously recommending shareholders to accept the 480p per share cash offer.


Wincanton advised its shareholders to refrain from taking any action concerning the approach by the potential competing bidder at this time.


Wincanton has opted not to comment further, while GXO has been approached for a statement.


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