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FedEx to acquire Polish courier

By control on April 5, 2012

FedEx Corp. has agreed to purchase Polish shipping company Opek Sp.z o.o. for an undisclosed amount. The deal, which is slated to close this summer, will provide FedEx Express with access to a Polish ground network that processes 12.5 million shipments per year. Opek’s annual revenue is estimated at $70 million.

FedEx CEO Frederick Smith said the decision to invest in Europe was strategic. “In recent years, we have made significant investments throughout Europe, greatly expanding our network coverage and improving service to customers,” he said in a statement.

“We have an excellent strategy that has steadily advanced our position in the region, and we are well positioned for profitable growth as we increase the number of direct-served locations in Europe,” Smith continued.

According to a press release, FedEx Express’ European expansion began in 2006 when it bought UK transportation company ANC Holdings Ltd. One year later, FedEx Express acquired its service provider, Flying Cargo Hungary Kft., launching its wholly owned operation in Hungary.

2009 and 2010 saw the expansion of FedEx Express’ hub at Roissy-Charles de Gaulle Airport and the relocation of its Central and Eastern European hub from Frankfurt to Cologne, Germany. So far in fiscal 2012, FedEx Express has opened 26 new offices in France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Northern Ireland and Sweden, according to the press release.

The company’s procurement of Opek, however, will provide it with a host of new business opportunities, said Gerald Leary, president of FedEx Express Europe, Middle East, Indian Subcontinent and Africa.

“The acquisition delivers an excellent extension to the current service portfolios of both companies and puts us in an even better position to jointly meet the growing needs of our customers,” Leary said in a statement. “Our two companies represent a strategic fit with a common commitment to enhance the service we can offer Polish businesses, invest in our people and positively impact our communities as good corporate citizens.”

FedEx’s acquistion of Opek comes less than three weeks after chief competitor UPS acquired Dutch logistics firm TNT Express for $6.77 billion.

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