Editor's choice
16 déc 19

Who bought what in 2019?

If you want to know how the market goes, keep an eye on who buys what. Acquisitions and mergers are a good way to take the temperature of the fleet and mobility industry. They are a convenient way to acquire expertise, enter a new market segment or add geographic range to your activities. And, as this month-by-month overview shows, 2019 was a pretty busy year. Click on each title to read the news in full.  

January

Hitachi Capital acquires Maske Fleet
Maske Fleet is a vehicle rental and fleet management company with activities in Germany, Austria and Denmark. The acquisition is another step in Hitachi Capital’s march towards Europe-wide coverage. Until recently, Hitachi Capital’s only European presence was in the UK. The company previously expanded into the Netherlands and Poland. 

Terberg and Business Lease merge
Terberg Leasing and Business Lease Nederland finalise their merger. The two Netherlands-based, family-owned vehicle leasing companies are now called Terberg Business Lease Group, with a combined fleet of 46,500 vehicles, via three separate labels: Business Lease, Privatelease.com and Justlease. The merger only applies to the Dutch market; Business Lease continues to trade under its original name in Eastern Europe. 

Bridgestone acquires TomTom Telematics
Bridgestone announced it would acquire TomTom Telematics. This fits with the strategy of Bridgestone, the number one tyre manufacturer in the world, to diversify into mobility solutions, such as the telematics solutions offered by TomTom Telematics.

Bosch acquires EM-motive
Automotive supplier Robert Bosch acquires Daimler's stake in EM-motive, a manufacturer of motors for electric and hybrid cars set up as a joint venture by both companies. For Bosch, the acquisition is the next logical step on the path to market leadership in electromobility.

February

PSA acquires TravelCar
Two years after investing in TravelCar, a start-up specialised in parking and car rental solutions, Groupe PSA acquires the company. It signals the manufacturer’s goal of accelerating its expertise in MaaS. 

VWFS acquires Fleet Logistics
Volkswagen Financial Services acquires a 60% stake in Fleet Logistics. The acquisition is the result of a strategic partnership with TÜV Süd, the inspection and certification specialists who were the sole shareholders (and will retain 40%). The partnership aims to bundle and develop both companies’ mobility offers for fleet customers. 

KAR acquires COTW
KAR Auction Services, the U.S.-based global remarketing player, finalises its takeover of CarsOnTheWeb (COTW), the Europe-wide online vehicle auction specialist based in Belgium. With the acquisition of COTW – henceforth Adesa Europe - KAR improves its strategic position and expands its geographic coverage, which until now comprised North America and the United Kingdom, to include continental Europe.  

Europcar acquires Nordic franchisees
Europcar acquires its franchise operations Europcar Finland and Europcar Norway. The deal extends Europcar’s corporate network from 18 to 20 countries. 

VWFS acquires LogPay
VWFS this month also acquired LogPay Financial Services, a fuel card and toll payment specialist. The deal signals VWFS’s commitment to extending the range of its mobility services.

D’Ieteren acquires Zipcar’s Belgian fleet
Avis subsidiary Zipcar is leaving the Belgian market. Its staff, vehicles and activities are taken over by Belgium’s importer for VW Group vehicles, D’Ieteren. It will integrate the assets into its own car-sharing platform, Poppy. 

March

ALD acquires SternLease
ALD Automotive acquires SternLease, the leasing arm of Stern Group, the Dutch listed market leader in automotive retail. This transaction aims to strengthen ALD’s SME and Private Lease offering in the Netherlands.

Eneco eMobility acquires Flow Charging
Eneco eMobility takes over Flow Charging, a company providing charging stations for companies and individuals in the Netherlands and Belgium.

Autobinck acquires ROI Fleet&Mobility
Utrecht-based automotive group Autobinck acquires ROI Fleet&Mobility, a Dutch fleet management company with about 10,000 vehicles in the portfolio. This fits with Autobinck’s strategy to further develop its range of mobility services.

Via ID acquires UbiGo
UbiGo, the Swedish mobility as a service (MaaS) company, has been bought by Via ID, part of Mobivia. Via ID describes itself as a ‘business accelerator’ specialising in mobility services. 

ZF acquires Wabco
In a deal worth more than €6 billion, Germany-based transmissions supplier ZF Friedrichshafen acquires Wabco, a provider of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). ZF and Wabco already worked together in the past, jointly building an evasive manoeuvre assist system. 

May

Michelin acquires Masternaut
UK-based vehicle tracking provider Masternaut is acquired by tyre giant Michelin. Masternaut is to be part of Michelin's Service and Solution business division.

Moovel acquires Validated
Moovel (now renamed ReachNow) acquires Validated, a platform allowing corporates, retailers, institutions and others to subsidize transportation for their customers and employees. 

June

Engie acquires ChargePoint
France-based energy group Engie acquires ChargePoint Services (CPS), a provider of EV charging solutions in the UK. The acquisition makes sense as part of Engie’s ambition to become a major player in the UK’s EV market, in the corporate, private and public segments. 

July

Enterprise UK acquires SHB Hire
Enterprise Rent-A-Car UK acquires SHB Hire, which operates a fleet of more than 18,500 commercial vehicles. The agreement creates one of the UK's largest commercial-vehicle rental businesses, with a combined fleet of more than 45,000 commercial vehicles.  

WEX acquires EG Group fuel cards
All fuel card activities of the Belgian EG Group have been acquired by WEX, one of the leading fleet service organisations in the world.

CarNext.com acquires AutoManager
CarNext.com, the pan-European digital marketplace for high-quality used cars, acquires Belgium-based AutoManager, a technology company that has developed a proprietary digital vehicle management platform, enabling seamless online vehicle remarketing. This further enables CarNext.com to create a cross-border marketplace for high-quality used cars and third-party suppliers in 23 European countries.

August

Marc Odinius acquires Dataforce
Marc Odinius, long-standing Managing Director of Dataforce, acquires all shares of the company and is now its sole owner. The automotive data and market research company has around 90 employees Frankfurt, Rome and Beijing. 

October

Hitachi Capital acquires Mobilease
Hitachi Capital acquires a minority stake (49%) in Netherlands-based Mobility Mixx, formerly a LeasePlan subsidiary, while its Dutch subsidiary Hitachi Mobility Lease has acquired Belgium-based leasing company Mobilease. With these acquisitions, Hitachi Capital expands its European footprint.

Toyota Fleet Mobility acquires Inchcape Fleet Solutions
Toyota Fleet Mobility acquires one of the UK’s largest full-service leasing companies, Inchcape Fleet Solutions (IFS), for £100 million (€113.5 million). The acquisition continues Toyota’s strategy to develop from a vehicle maker to a mobility provider. 

FCA and PSA agree to merge
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) and Peugeot maker PSA of France agree to merger terms that would create the world’s fourth-largest automaker, better able to position itself to tackle a host of costly technological and regulatory challenges.

November

Pon Bike acquires Urban Arrow
Netherlands-based Pon Bike acquires Urban Arrow, also from the Netherlands, a manufacturer of electric cargo bikes. The aim is to grow Pon Bike’s customer base on its home market and internationally.

Geotab buys Intendia
Global telematics provider Geotab acquires Intendia, a Spanish engineering firm specialised in integrating tech solutions for the European heavy-truck market. The acquisition adds to Geotab’s engineering capabilities, complements its product portfolio and boosts its growth opportunities in Europe. 

Pon and NS merge mobility subsidiaries
Dutch automotive conglomerate Pon and Dutch national railway company NS are merging their mobility subsidiaries. Next Urban Mobility (Pon) and Hely (NS) will continue together as Hely. 

Authored by: Frank Jacobs