PSA to acquire US supply chain company BDP International – Commentary

On the face of it, combining port operations and logistics operations makes perfect sense as it links the first mile and last mile of a container journey. With the application of the right technology, it could improve the customer experience, allow for easier monitoring of shipments, and ease the compliance burden.

The challenge of operating a services business, however, where the greatest assets are clients and employees while the rest of the business is about getting the best return out of physical assets, will not be an easy one. PSA does of course have other services businesses, in GETS, Callista, and others, but BDP is quite a different animal with a much wider network, operations in 130 countries, and 5,000 employees around the world. As a statement of intent to move into global logistics, it’s an impressive one.

BDP is a well-managed business and brings with it a hugely impressive customer list, especially within the chemicals sector. As always in these situations, the next move will give an indication as to how far and how fast PSA is moving into the logistics sector.

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