Intermodal Spanish-French alliance to acquire Primavia
The European Commission (EC) has authorised the aquisition of the Spanish transport company Primavia by Krone-MurServifrio, also from Spain and SNCF subsidiary Europe Intermodal Holding (EIH).
Krone-MurServifrio is the owner of Primafrio, a Murcia-based road transport company whose main activity is in handling and transporting agricultural products from Murcia, Valencia and Huelva. It currently holds the biggest refrigerated truck fleet in Spain. Meanwhile, EIH is SNCF’s intermodal subsidiary, with several acquisitions on its name, aiming to counterbalance DB and MSC’s expansion on the Iberian rail freight market.
Many analysts think the purchase is a step forward for Krone-MurServifrio, in strengthening its leading position and taking part as a rail freight operator on the Spanish Mediterranean rail corridor, which is currently developed by the EU and the Spanish government.
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The Spanish company created Primavia in June 2018, while EIH aqcuired a stake in August, before the EC approval. Primafrio was founded in the 1960s. It has been essential in securing the arrival of fresh agricultural products from Valencia and Murcia to the French, British and German markets. Over the years, it has become a transport partner for many domestic corporates. The company owns around 1,600 refrigerated trucks and 3,000 m3 of cold warehouses. Its income totalled 317 million Euros in 2017.
The new rail freight department may be a milestone in the Spanish truck industry, traditionally opposed to intermodal solutions. The truck industry holds a strong lobby arguing against Spanish rules that favour the rail freight industry.