HHLA and Deutsche Bahn are reshuffling their intermodal shareholdings as Hamburg’s biggest stevedore and Europe’s largest rail freight company move to tighten control over their inland rail container operations.
HHLA is taking over DB’s stakes in two companies, Polzug [33.3 percent] and Metrans [35 percent], which specialize in intermodal traffic across Central and eastern Europe.
In return, HHLA will transfer to DB its 50 percent stake in Transfracht, a rail company that transports ocean containers between the ports of Hamburg and Bremen-Bremerhaven and terminals in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
The companies did not publish financial details of the transaction, which requires antitrust clearance.
Following the share restructuring, Transfracht will be wholly owned by DB Mobility Logistics, while HHLA will own 86.5 percent of Metrans and 74.5 percent of Polzug Intermodal.
“The unbundling will enable HHLA to align its intermodal companies even more … with the needs of maritime logistics,” HHLA said.
HHLA said it plans to further intensify its cooperation with PKP Cargo, the Polish rail freight carrier that will remain a shareholder in Polzug. This could lead later to PKP increasing its stake in Polzug, it added.
Alexander Hedderich, DB Schenker Rail CEO, said full ownership of Transfracht “will permit direct corporate control and guidance by DB Schenker Rail.”
“Transfracht is our most important operator in European sea port hinterland transport,” Hedderich said. “We recognize great potential to improve performance and market positioning ... for the benefit our customers.”
Transfracht reported revenue of $330 million in 2011.
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