Wincanton, has bought the container distribution operator CEL Group, which it says gives it a 15 per cent market share making it market leader.
CEL provides UK-wide container haulage, storage and maintenance services, employs 470 people and operates a fleet of 370 vehicles.
Jeff Anderson, managing director of Wincanton, said, “This considerable strengthening of our container activities in the UK complements our market leading intermodal business in mainland Europe and demonstrates our future commitment to the container industry and our customers. In CEL, we have found a business that provides a strong strategic fit with Wincanton.”
Wincanton says the move will strengthen operations at its inland container terminal at Alconbury, which provides off-dock container storage to support its customers’ activities, as well as allow Wincanton to benefit from the growth in global sourcing and low cost overseas manufacturing.
* Wincanton’s Underlying operating profit grew 19.6 per cent to £30.5m in the first half on sales up 16.4 per cent to £1.2bn. However, restructuring costs and amortisation of acquired intangibles meant that pre-tax profit fell from £22.1m to £12m.
Chief Executive Graeme McFaull said: “Our results for the half year confirm both the strength and resilience of our well-diversified portfolio of activities and the quality of our long-term customer partnerships. We continue to see attractive opportunities to accelerate our growth through infill acquisitions.”