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Transports Gagne embarks on the road to logistics

Transport logistique Gagne

The Rhône-Alpes-based group, which specialises in refrigerated transport, is acquiring SMTRT 45, a company specialising in logistics. Here are some insights from the experts at AURIS Finance, a consultancy specialising in mergers and acquisitions.

On 20 December 2023, the transport group Gagne acquired SMTRT 45 (Société montargoise de Transports Routiers et de Transit). This new move in the transport sector will enable Transports Gagne to improve its territorial coverage in the North, Centre and Paris regions. SMTRT 45 began to lose momentum in 2016, and saw its turnover fall during the covid health crisis, before returning to pre-crisis levels in 2022, at around €18 million. With this acquisition, Transports Gagne takes over a fleet of 70 vehicles and around a hundred employees, adding to the 450 employees, including 300 drivers, who make up the group.

Logistics: aiming for the 2024 Olympic Games

In addition to the fleet and human resources, this acquisition will enable Gagne to establish its new logistics business, particularly in the run-up to the Olympic Games. “With the 2024 Olympics in mind, we wanted to step up our development by swiftly establishing ourselves in the area to serve the Paris region. This opportunity with SMTRT 45 gives us a base from which to continue our concentration on central France, the Paris region and the North, and also allows us to consolidate a new activity that we are about to launch at group level, namely logistics”, explained Stéphane Coin, Chairman and CEO of SAS Omnitrans (Transports Gagne). With the acquisition of SMTRT 45, Transports Gagne is taking over 18,000 square metres of warehouse space. This is in addition to the 6,000 square metre building owned by the group in Cavaillon.

Incremental development and private equity

Founded in 1965 by Pierre Gagne, the group, also known by the name of its operating company Omnitrans-Gagne, has long been a family business. However, 2010 marked a turning point: three senior executives took control of Transports Gagne in an MBO (Management By Out) operation. This was followed by the opening up of the company’s capital to outside investors. In 2016, BPI and Carvest took an initial stake. In 2021, the group was recapitalised and UI/SOFIMAC joined the capital alongside the historical investors. The investments made by the private equity funds support the group’s strategy of targeted acquisitions. In 2018, Transports Gagne took control of TPS Charité at the Commercial Court of Besançon.

European ambitions

The group, which now has eight branches in France, makes no secret of its European ambitions. Over the next five years, its expansion into the single market could generate a turnover of €100 million. To achieve this, the group could take over new businesses in France and abroad.

Our experts at your side

To gain market share, groups such as Transports Gagne are positioning themselves with a mixed offering, including freight transport and logistics warehousing. Through targeted acquisitions, they are taking over smaller companies with strong local roots. There are many opportunities in the transport and logistics sector today. AURIS Finance’s experts are sector specialists. They are at your side throughout the entire acquisition and divestment process.

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