US delivery service FedEx has announced it has reached a deal to buy the Dutch logistics giant TNT Express in a bid to expand its European presence. Both companies said anti-trust concerns would be addressed properly.
FedEx reported Tuesday that it would acquire Dutch rival TNT Express for 4.4 billion euros ($4.8 billion) with a view to strengthening its position on the European market amid a global e-commerce pickup.
"The companies reached conditional agreement on a recommended all-cash public offer of 8 euros per ordinary TNT Express share," a joint statement said, with the suggested price representing a premium of 33 percent over what the share cost on average after trading closed on April 2.
There were no objections to the deal by TNT Express' largest shareholder, Dutch mail service PostNL, which owns a 14.7 percent stake in the company.
"Our customers can profit from the true global reach and expanded propositions, while with this offer our shareholders can already reap benefits today that otherwise would only have been available in the longer run," TNT Express chief Tex Gunning said in a statement.
He noted that the Dutch firm would sell its airline operations in compliance with European airline ownership regulations. This and all other possible anti-trust concerns would be addressed in due course, Gunning stated while adding that both firms planned to shape the merger without any significant redundancies.
TNT Express operates in over 200 countries and maintains a leading role in the European road freight network. It currently employs 65,000 people, while FedEx has a workforce of about 300,000.
hg/cjc (Reuters, dpa, AFP)