Published: April 2016
Pages: 58
Format: PDF + Datasheet

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About Global Parcels Mergers and Acquisitions Market Insight Report 2016

Apex Insight’s Global Parcels M&A report provides an analysis of acquisition activity in the global parcels / postal industry from 2006 to the present day. The report analyses 196 acquisitions that we have identified which were carried out by or involving postal operators, integrators, express parcels companies, private equity firms and other businesses operating in the industry or related industries during this period.


We have analysed the key trends and insights from this merger and acquisition dataset, including deal size, deals by geography, by acquirer and by year. We also provide comments on and relevant context to each deal as well as insights into the acquisition strategies of those organisations which have made multiple transactions.


The report includes an Excel spreadsheet containing the full merger and acquisition dataset which we have researched from a large number of sources, providing the following details (where available) on the 196 acquisitions:


– Date
– Acquirer
– Acquirer Type
– Acquiror Country
– Target Company
– Vendor
– Target Country
– Target Region
– Target Activity
– Valuation
– Sales Multiple
– EBIT Multiple
– % stake acquired



We have compiled a dataset of almost 200 acquisitions which have taken place in the global parcels and mail markets over the period from 2006 to the present (April 2016). The largest number of transactions has been carried out by postal operators, followed by integrators, private equity houses, logistics players and marketplaces.

Post Offices have made major efforts to modernise their core operations – sometimes with involvement from private equity investment – and to diversify away from declining domestic mail volumes, expanding through acquisition into segments with better growth prospects.

Key target areas for postal operators have included parcels, logistics (including freight forwarding), e-commerce, e-fulfilment, direct mail, unaddressed mail, marketing service providers, and software / data.

The largest acquisition in our dataset, Japan Post’s US$5.1bn purchase of the Australian-based logistics service provider, Toll Group, fits this pattern.

Other post offices have made smaller, strategic acquisitions, often on a regional basis and mainly in parcels and logistics. Postal operators such as Austrian Post, PostNord, Norway Post and Singapore Post have carried out a series of targeted acquisitions in their respective regions.

The leading global integrators have also been active, having carried out 29 deals in total over the period.

– The largest integrator deal is FedEx’s proposed acquisition of TNT Express, for US$4.8bn.
– UPS has also been active, having made several acquisitions to increase its focus on B2C e-retail, as well as in other areas.

The leading global marketplaces, Amazon and Alibaba, are increasingly regarding delivery as a core business for them. Both are building their own logistics infrastructure in order to supplement, or potentially replace, existing delivery providers with:

– Amazon having acquired Colis Prive and an option to invest in Yodel
– Alibaba having made investments in its Cainaio Logistics operation as well as in Singapore Post.

Private equity has also been involved in the sector, with some successes, such as CVC’s investments to support transformation at Post Danmark and bpost and some more recent buy-and-builds, and some failures, such as Better Capital with City Link and Candover at DX.

The analysis shows that e-commerce has been a central driver of acquisitions as buyers have sought to increase their exposure to its positive growth dynamics. Nearly 40% of transactions were acquisitions of companies operating in the parcels market. The growth of e-commerce has made parcel delivery an attractive growth segment for postal operators and other acquirers.

The next most active segment has been logistics. Together, nearly 50% of transactions were in the segments of parcels and logistics – attractive areas for investment, driven by growth in e-commerce and international trade. After Japan Post’s acquisition of Toll, UPS’s purchase of Coyote Logistics is the largest logistics transaction.

Europe has accounted for the most transactions, followed by Asia Pacific and then the Americas (mainly the US).

Momentum is increasing: 2015 saw the most deals of all the years covered by our dataset, at 41, up five-fold since 2010. Strategic exits have indicated of changes in company strategy, financial priorities (eg debt repayment) or amendments in regulation.

Particularly notable has been DHL’s withdrawal from domestic parcel delivery operations in the US, Romania, France and the UK, some of which were heavily loss-making, and which were deemed not to fit its strategy of focussing on premium international volumes. More recently, it has also reduced its shareholding in its Chinese partner.

About this report 2

What does the report contain? 2
Who is it useful for? 2
What are the sources and methodology? 2
Definitions 2

About Apex Insight 3

Company background 3
Consulting services 3
Related research 3
Research subscriptions 3

Contents 4
List of charts and tables 9

Summary 10

M&A Analysis 11

Deals by Year 11
Deals by Industry Segment 11
Deals by Type of Acquirer 12

Post Offices - Diversification 12

Integrators 14

Private equity 15

Marketplaces 15
- Amazon 15
- Alibaba Group 16
- eBay 16

Acquisitions by Size 17
Deals by Region 17

Acquisition Profiles 18

FedEx 18
- Deals and rationale

UPS Inc. 22
- Deals and rationale

Royal Mail 26
- Deals and rationale

Singapore Post 28
- Deals and rationale

PostNord 32
- Deals and rationale

Austrian Post 34
- Deals and rationale

Aramex 38
- Deals and rationale

Deutsche Post DHL 40
- Deals and rationale

Le Groupe La Poste / GeoPost 43
- Deals and rationale

Other Acquisitions 47
- Deals and rationale

List of Charts and Tables

Number of Deals in Global Parcels / Postal Market, 2008-2016 11
Number of Deals By Industry Segment, 2006-2016 11
Number of Deals By Type of Acquirer, 2006-2016 12
Parcel Operator Deals By Target Activity, 2006-2016 12
Acquisitions by Size (where valuation available), 2006-2016 17
Acquisitions by Target Region, 2006-2016 17
FedEx Inc. Acquisitions 2006-2016 18
UPS Inc. Acquisitions 2004-2015 22
Royal Mail Acquisitions 2015-16 26
Singapore Post Acquisitions 2011-2016 28
PostNord Acquisitions 2011-2015 32
Austrian Post Acquisitions 2011-2014 34
Aramex Acquisitions 2006-2016 38
Deutsche Post DHL Acquisitions 2004-2016 40
Le Groupe La Poste Acquisitions 2004-2016 43
CitySprint Acquisitions 2007-2015 48

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