German railway company Deutsche Bahn has reached an agreement with the German government to sell its logistics company DB Schenker in order to free up funds for further investment in its own infrastructure, der Spiegel and Reuters reported on Thursday, citing sources.
DB Schenker’s price is estimated at about 15 billion Euros ($15 billion). Berlin is seeking to sell the company to restore and put in order the country’s railway infrastructure, der Spiegel reported.
The Essen-based logistics service provider Schenker, with its 75,000 employees worldwide, accounts for more than a third of Deutsche Bahn’s turnover. In the first half of 2022, Schenker achieved an operating profit of almost 1.2 billion euros.
The value of the company is currently estimated in financial market circles at 12 to 20 billion euros, but depends heavily on the global economy as a result of the Ukraine and energy crises. The list of potential buyers for the Deutsche Bahn subsidiary is long, because Schenker is still one of the largest in the fragmented logistics market: Maersk, Kühne+Nagel and the Danish DSV are mentioned again and again.
The management of Deutsche Bahn was long regarded as opposed to a sale, as the division was usually a comparatively reliable source of profits and was thus able to support the loss-making rail traffic in Germany. A sale of Schenker became apparent after the traffic light coalition took over the government last year. The FDP and the Greens are in favor of the railways concentrating on passenger and freight transport in Germany.