German logistics provider the Rhenus Group is making a splash in Latin America with the acquisition of freight forwarder BLU Logistics and the purchase of a 51% majority stake in port agency LBH Group.
Both have a significant presence in the region, with BLU maintaining a footprint in Colombia, Mexico, Argentina, Ecuador, Uruguay, and Paraguay. For its part, LBH has a presence in 30 nations overall, six Latin American nations, and associates in several Central American countries.
Combined, the two moves will add some 2,200 employees to Rhenus, according to the Holzwickede-based company.
“Our strategic acquisitions,” said Rhenus Group CEO and Chairman Tobias Bartz, “allow us to strengthen our global network and our range of services in the LATAM region, where we are seeing an increase in demand for logistics services, especially for the e-commerce sector.”
Bartz added that the proximity to the US and North American markets, and the related opportunities for nearshoring, also contributed to the company’s desire to have a larger presence in South America.
“The Colombian market demands exports to the United States and China, and Rhenus is focused on boosting imports from countries such as China and Germany, supporting investments in the LATAM market,” he said. “Anticipating slight growth in 2024, exports are expected to increase from $40 billion to $41 billion, and imports from $11.8 billion to $12.6 billion.”