Haulier Eddie Stobart is to become the core of a new multi-modal logistics organisation set up by the Westbury Property Fund.
Westbury is divesting itself of its property assets and merging with Stobart in a £138m deal. The resulting company will be called Stobart Group.
Westbury already has a port development site in Runcorn and a rail freight operating business and a rail terminal in Widnes. In a separate deal it is buying O’Connor, a rail connected freight handling business for some £23m.
Stobart owners Andrew Tinkler and William Stobart will become substantial shareholders and lead the management team of Eddie Stobart Ltd as chief executive and chief operating officer respectively.
The moves will create an integrated asset-backed logistics company with net assets of over £250 million.
William Stobart, managing director of Eddie Stobart, said: “We believe the future of industrial logistics is about the integration of all modes – linking roads with rail, ports and waterways and, in time, air freight.”
A key part of the future strategy of the new, enlarged business will be to invest in the new port at Runcorn and maximise development opportunities at Widnes to create an inter-modal port facility with road, rail and deep sea and inland waterway access capable of handling significant cargo volumes, linked to the haulage network.”
Westbury is selling a property portfolio worth some £142m.
Eddie Stobart has a fleet of more than 900 trucks and 2.6 million square feet of storage space across a network of 27 operating sites around the UK.