Wincanton offloads European business

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The Independent Online

Wincanton announced its exit from mainland Europe yesterday after agreeing the sale of businesses employing 3,000 staff.

The €44m (£39m) sale to the logistics firm Rhenus – which will also assume a pension deficit of €30m – covers Wincanton's operations in 38 locations in Germany and 30 sites in France.

The chief executive, Eric Born, who took the helm of the haulier in December, said the disposal would enable Wincanton to focus on its core UK market.

Wincanton currently employs 26,000 people and boasts Sainsbury's and Comet among its UK clients. It is looking to expand its operations in the public sector, after recently signing a deal with the outsourcing firm Serco, and in the defence industry, where it already works with BAE Systems.