Greenbriar Equity Group LLC has acquired a majority stake in France-based World Freight Company International, a general sales and services agent for freight cargo in the aviation industry. No financial terms were disclosed. As a result of the transaction, WFCI’s minority investors, which include 3i, ActoMezz, IDI, IDI Mezzanine, Idinvest and Ardian, are exiting their investments.
Paris, France, March 9, 2015 – World Freight Company International (“WFCI” or the “Company”), the global leader in the General Sales and Service Agent (GSSA) market, has selected Greenbriar Equity Group LLC, a New York-based private investment firm, as its new equity partner. WFCI will immediately become a majority owned portfolio company of Greenbriar. WFCI’s existing minority investors, including 3i, ActoMezz, IDI, IDI Mezzanine, Idinvest and Ardian, are exiting their investment. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
WFCI manages approximately €1 billion of freight annually with over 750 employees worldwide. Headquartered in Roissy, France, WFCI markets the cargo freight capacity of more than 190 airline customers serving every major air cargo market globally. It has played a significant role in consolidating the GSSA market and operates through its subsidiaries including Air Logistics, Kales Group, ATC, Worldwide GSA, Hermes, and Platinum.
Pierre Brunet, WFCI’s founder, CEO, and current majority shareholder will continue as a significant shareholder and as CEO of the Company. The senior management teams of all of the operating subsidiaries of WFCI will also continue in their existing leadership roles.
Noah Roy, Managing Partner at Greenbriar, said: “WFCI is a trusted partner to its customers and plays a critical role in the global air freight economy. The Company is led by a proven and experienced management team who helped establish the modern GSSA market and we see significant opportunities for further growth at WFCI, both with existing customers as well as with new customers and in new markets worldwide.”
Pierre Brunet, CEO of WFCI, said: “Greenbriar’s deep expertise and relationships in the logistics and aviation sectors make them a perfect fit for WFCI. They are committed to supporting WFCI as we continue our international growth strategy, both organically and through additional acquisitions. We look forward to working with them. I would also like to thank ActoMezz, IDI, IDI Mezzanine, Idinvest and Ardian for their support since 2008 and in particular 3i who through its investment in 2011, its international network, and their healthy and constructive challenge helped facilitate the internationalization of WFCI. ”
Guillaume Basquin, Director at 3i, said: “We are proud to have partnered with Pierre Brunet and his team, and have helped WFCI to consolidate its market leading position through five strategic acquisitions across Europe, the US and Asia, and new contract gains with high growth airlines. This is now a natural step for WFCI to continue its worldwide development with a specialized investment firm and I am utterly convinced Pierre Brunet and his team will carry on delivering impressive results.”
About Greenbriar Equity Group
Greenbriar Equity Group LLC, a private equity firm with over $2.5 billion of committed capital, focuses exclusively on the global transportation industry, including companies in logistics and distribution, aerospace and air transport, automotive, industrial equipment and components, MRO, surface transport and other related sectors. Greenbriar invests with proven management teams who are interested in being significant equity owners in their companies as well as with corporate partners who are interested in raising capital. Greenbriar’s partners bring many decades of experience at the highest levels within the transportation industry. Additional information may be found at www.greenbriarequity.com.