Ceva Logistics has rejected a takeover bid from Danish rival DSV and lifted a shareholding limit applying to CMA CGM, allowing the French-owned global container logistics giant to potentially increase its share capital in the company.
DSV made an offer to buy Ceva for CHF27.75 ($28) per share earlier this month in a move that was rejected by Ceva’s board of directors on the grounds that it “significantly” undervalued the company’s prospects. Ceva said in a statement that, together with CMA CGM, the company had been “exploring measures to enhance performance” through “additional collaboration”.
In a further move, Ceva has now lifted a restriction on the maximum shareholding CMA CGM can acquire to 33%. CMA CGM took a 24.99% stake in Ceva earlier this year, following Ceva’s initial public offering (IPO) in the second quarter of the year, but with an agreement that it could not increase its stake beyond this for six months.
“CMA CGM's duty to not increase its holding above the current 24.99% of the share capital until November 5 2018 has been amended to the effect that [it] is allowed to increase its holding up to one third of the voting rights of Ceva Logistics with immediate effect,” confirmed Ceva in a statement.
The revised arrangement limits CMA CGM to a shareholding of 33% for the next six months. According to Swiss stock exchange law, this is the maximum a shareholder can hold in a company without having to launch a mandatory tender offer.
CMA CGM Group has 504 vessels and serves over 420 of the world’s 521 commercial ports. It achieved $21.1 billion in revenues last year. Amongst its global subsidiaries are APL, based in Singapore, and CNC, in the intra-Asia market.
Ceva posted revenues of $7 billion in 2017 and is ranked as the world’s fifth largest contract logistics provider. It is also ranked tenth globally in the freight forwarding business. Automotive is one of the five main sectors it is involved in.