Alantra advises Meanings Capital on the sale of a majority stake in Groupe Sterne to Tikehau Capital

SECTORBusiness Services

ServiceM&A; Debt Advisory

Nov 2021
Sell-side advisory & Debt financing

Paris – Alantra, the global investment banking and asset management specialist, is pleased to announce that it has advised Meanings Capital Partners and the management team on the sale of a majority stake in Groupe Sterne (“Sterne Group” or “the Group”), a European specialist in sustainable transport and logistics, to Tikehau Capital, an alternative asset management group. The Group’s management team is expected to reinvest significantly alongside Tikehau Capital and Meanings Capital Partners (which is reinvesting in the Group), with a view to supporting and closely partnering the three entities in the next phase of Sterne Group’s growth. Tikehau Capital will invest through its fund dedicated to energy transition, T2 Energy Transition Fund.

Founded in 1972, Sterne Group is now a key European player in multi-service transport and logistics with strong historical positions in customized, high value-added operations. Based on its historical offer of regular transport and night delivery, it has developed three complementary service offers (time-critical, urban delivery, aftermarket), as well as a best-in-class digital platform. Its ability to act on the levers of route optimization and optimized loading rates, combined with its extensive national and international network, make it a benchmark player in sustainable transport in a sector that is starting to decarbonize.

This sale is in line with the development strategy of the Sterne Group, which, with Meanings Capital Partners, has transformed its business model to become one of the European leaders in premium value-added transport and logistics. Over the last four years, Groupe Sterne has seen its turnover grow from €90 million to nearly €270 million, thanks to eight inorganic operations and sustained organic growth.

Alongside Sterne Group’s management team, Tikehau Capital and Meanings Capital Partners aim to support the organic and external development strategy of Groupe Sterne in its international transport and logistics activities; strengthen its position as a leading player in sustainable transport and logistics; and maintain a significant employee shareholding.

The introduction of Tikehau Capital as a majority shareholder represents a major step in the development of Groupe Sterne, particularly internationally, to pursue the strategy initiated in Europe and China.

Daniel Desage, Chairman of Groupe Sterne, and Laurent de Rosnay, CEO, said in a press release: “With the arrival of Tikehau Capital, we are delighted to continue the transformation and growth of Groupe Sterne, in order to accelerate its international development and support it in its energy transition. We would like to thank Meanings Capital Partners for the extraordinary journey we have made together to develop the Group in all its businesses, its digitalization and its internationalization, and for continuing the adventure with us.” 

Fabrice Scheer, Partner at Alantra, commented: “We are excited to have supported Meanings Capital Partners and the management of Groupe Sterne on finding the right partner in Tikehau Capital, which will support the Group in its next phase of development. This transaction evidences Alantra’s specialization and strong track-record in the Business Services sector.“

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