Acquisition completed at international logistics operator
Private investment firm Hudson Hill has acquired a majority stake in a North West logistics group, for an undisclosed sum.
New York-based Hudson Hill Capital, founded by Eric Rosen, has bought the stake in Rochdale-based InXpress Holdings Ltd, a software-enabled global franchisor of transportation and logistics services, in partnership with the company’s senior management team.
The transaction reinforces InXpress’s long-term commitment to provide world-class transportation and logistics solutions to small and medium-sized businesses.
InXpress is an international franchisor of parcel, freight, and delivery logistics services serving SME customers through a software platform and global network of almost 400 franchises in 14 countries.
Established in 1999, the company maintains relationships with tier-one parcel, air, and freight carriers around the world, offering discounted rates to franchisees that form relationships with SME customers through its direct salesforce.
The company also offers its SME customers and franchisees a SaaS platform, enabling franchisees to effectively manage customer service and customers to centrally manage their transportation and logistics requirements.
InXpress built its online software platform, Webship+, on more than 20 years of insight. Webship+’s easy-to-use software features include bespoke tailoring of best rates within their carrier network, a bulk upload tool to quickly manage multiple orders, and integration with all of the main e-commerce platforms.
Eric Rosen, managing partner of Hudson Hill, said: “We target companies founded by entrepreneurs and run by high-quality management teams with whom we can partner to bring the company to the next level of growth.
“InXpress presents a unique platform to continue to build the business globally and offer a wider set of freight solutions. We look forward to working closely and in partnership with existing management shareholders, Mark Taylor, Adam Thompson, Dustin Hansen, and the entire management team.”
Mark Taylor, global CEO of InXpress since 2015, a franchising expert who has spent the past 20 years working with private equity companies from the UK, US, and mainland Europe, said: “Most SME shippers do not have access to a simple, centralised transportation shipping solution like InXpress.
“Nor do they have access to experts in shipping at a local level, which is part of the service InXpress offers.
“The InXpress platform offers one-stop shipping solutions that leverage our expertise, dedicated customer service, and entrenched relationships with multiple carriers to provide business-to-business and e-commerce customers choice, scalability, and highly competitive rates to simplify all of their shipping needs.
“We are excited to work with the experienced Hudson Hill team to enhance our business and consistently improve our service offering to our global customers.”
Adam Thompson, CEO InXpress EMEA, who helped to start the business, said: “I am extremely proud of the company my father founded, which has seen huge growth over the past 20+ years.
“We are all very excited to continue the company’s growth trajectory by partnering with the HHC team who recognise our potential and to drive the next phase of InXpress’s growth.”
Dustin Hansen, CEO InXpress Americas since 2013 and member of the board of directors of the International Franchise Association, said: “The ideal InXpress customer prefers to bring simplicity to their international, domestic, e-commerce, and freight shipping needs.
“Carriers benefit from access to our highly fragmented SME customer base and simpler customer service requirements by outsourcing a number of support and back office functions to InXpress.”
KPMG led the transaction with a combined team from KPMG UK corporate finance – Christian Mayo, Claire Frangou, Patrick Simpson, Hannah Taylor and Sarah Bowen – alongside KPMG US corporate finance – Stephen Guy, Chris Weber, David Lazarek and Ranny Ma.
Deal advisory services were provided by KPMG transaction services – Sue Richardson, Steve Heath, Claire Elcock, Jack Pearson, Jake Williams, Harry Spencer and Claire McGuire – and KPMG debt advisory – Chris Lloyd, Stephen Detko.
Christian Mayo said: “InXpress is a leading example of a high-quality software-enabled business, achieving very significant growth on a global scale and with huge potential.
“This deal was highly contested and demonstrates the extremely strong M&A market for businesses that are continuing to perform in the current environment.
“This process was conducted right across the global pandemic period and is a testament to the expertise of all involved.”
Squire Patton Boggs advised the shareholders and management of InXpress, with a cross-border team led by corporate partners Paul Mann (Leeds), Giles Chesher (Manchester) and Danielle Asaad (Cleveland, Ohio), assisted by Hannah Crosland, Emily Downie, Rebecca Mayers, Mona Mojtabavi, Olivia Baccarella and Andrew Griesser.
Park Place Corporate Finance (Tim Simpson and Richard Firth) were Strategic advisors to the InXpress shareholders and acted as lead advisers to the reinvesting management.