Aiming to become the leading perishables transporter, Panalpina has continued its expansion in this market segment with the acquisition of Argentinian market leader, Newport Cargo, following an agreement reached by the two companies on 13 June. Details of the financial transaction were not made public.
Headquartered in Buenos Aires with offices at the Ezeiza International Airport, Newport Cargo handles around 24,000 tonnes of air freight exports per year.
“Panalpina’s perishables activities originated in Latin America, which is one of the world’s high-production regions for fresh produce,” says Stefan Karlen, CEO of Panalpina. “By acquiring Newport Cargo, we are not only gaining control over Argentinian perishables exports, but from neighbouring countries too.
“Fish, fruit and seeds for example, are trucked from various regions across the border to Argentina and flown out of Buenos Aires. So with this acquisition we are expanding our perishables footprint in an entire region and again strengthening our global end-to-end capabilities for perishables,” Karlen said.
Newport Cargo exports fish and berries to the US, where the company has a strong customer base and an office in Miami, while Panalpina traditionally imports high tech and consumer goods into Argentina. The cargo flows from South America northbound can be connected with or integrated in the unique Panalpina Charter Network with its gateway in Huntsville, Alabama, the forwarder said.
“Over the past forty years we have built very strong relationships with customers and airlines, a very broad perishables expertise and a successful niche business with live animals,” says Roberto Fernandez, CEO and majority shareholder of Newport Cargo.
“We can bring this expertise into Panalpina’s global network and benefit from established structures and processes that will upgrade our service offering and enable sustainable growth, also in the future,” he added.
Newport Cargo, founded in 1978 and a market leader in the Argentine market for air freight exports for the past 30 years, is fully owned by the CEO, the CFO Jose Gancedo and the CCO Federico Calvo. The company’s 42 staff, who serve 150 customers, and the 60 employees of Panalpina Argentina will be joined under one roof in Buenos Aires.
Once the deal is closed, Calvo will join Panalpina and be responsible for the company’s Air Freight operations in Argentina. He will be accompanied by Fernando Loureiro in the perishables business.
“Soon our workforce in Argentina will almost double and we are very excited to get the top-notch concentrated perishables and equine knowledge of our new colleagues at Newport Cargo on board,” comments Laurent Riesen, Panalpina’s managing director for Argentina and Uruguay.
By 2020 the company, under the umbrella of the Panalpina Perishables Network, aims to be the preferred global supplier of perishables logistics, offering customers in both origin and destination countries complete end-to-end solutions on a global scale.
Panalpina said the success factors for this “accelerated and concentrated push into perishables” are the company’s global coverage, dedicated perishables experts in key markets, and the unique Panalpina Charter Network. The company’s perishables activities originated in Latin America and were then extended to Europe and Africa with the Panalpina Perishables Network now spanning 25 key countries.