Yesterday, Swiss forwarder Panalpina released news of a new deal to acquire Argentine logistics company Newport Cargo S.A. in a move that will bolster its orientation toward the growing Latin American perishables market.
Newport Cargo handles 24,000 tonnes of freight exports per year, consisting mainly of U.S.-bound fish and berries. Following the merger, the cargo will flow northbound through Panalpina’s charter network, stopping at its U.S. facility in Huntsville, Alabama, before being distributed through other North American hubs.
The Swiss forwarding giant’s investment in the region is a response to a growing demand for Latin American perishables. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), net profit from airfreight in Central and South America is projected to grow 80 percent to US$900 million between the end of 2017 and next year.
Latin America is one of the world’s high-production regions for fresh produce, said Stefan Karlen, CEO of Panalpina. “By acquiring Newport Cargo, we are not only gaining control over Argentine perishables exports, but from neighboring countries too.”
The two companies will merge into one location in Buenos Aires, Argentina’s capital, doubling Panalpina’s presence in the country.