EDENRED PURSUES ITS GEOGRAPHIC EXPANSION IN FLEET & MOBILITY SOLUTIONS AND
INCREASES ITS STAKE IN UTA
UTA, a subsidiary of the world leader in transactional solutions for companies,
employees and merchants, is expanding its sales footprint to six new countries
in Eastern Europe, mainly through the acquisition of the fuel card distributor
Timex Card headquartered in Poland. At the same time, the Group will increase
its stake in UTA to 83%.
Sales footprint expanded in Eastern Europe
Edenred, through its subsidiary UTA, is acquiring a 51% stake(1) in its
distributor Timex Card based in Poland, which also operates in Estonia, Latvia,
Lithuania and Ukraine. Alongside the acquisition, UTA will begin its own
operations in Bulgaria. Across these six countries, nearly 1,800 transportation
companies use today UTA solutions, which provide access to a network of more
than 54,000 partner service stations.
This will strengthen the position of UTA, the number two Europe-wide issuer of
multi-brand fuel cards, in Eastern Europe and thereby help speed up the
development of its offering in this dynamic region. Poland is indeed Europe's
leading international transportation market and, together with the Baltic
states account for almost 35% of the European cabotage market in terms of
metric tons per kilometer.
These operations are in line with the development strategy of Edenred's Fleet
and mobility solutions in Eastern Europe, a region where the Group is already
solidly established through its Employee Benefits business.
"One year ago, when Edenred became the majority shareholder of UTA, we
expressed our willingness to accelerate the commercial development of its heavy
fleet solutions in Eastern Europe. With the acquisition of Timex Card, we seize
a unique opportunity to rapidly increase our presence in high-growth markets,"
said Antoine Dumurgier, Chief Operating Officer of Edenred Fleet & Mobility
(1) Under the Timex Card acquisition agreement, UTA has an option to purchase
shares held by minority shareholder, who in turn has an option to sell its
shares to UTA.
"By becoming a majority shareholder in Timex Card and establishing its own
operations in Bulgaria, UTA will be even closer to its clients and thereby be
able to accelerate the development of its offer", said Volker Huber, Chief
Executive Officer of UTA.
"Combining Edenred's strong market presence with UTA's range of high-quality
solutions and the industry experience of Timex Card, which has been a
distributor for more than 25 years on the Polish market and for more than ten
years in the Baltic states and Ukraine, will give us significant leverage to
seize new opportunities", said Andrzej Sklodowski, Chief Executive Officer of
Edenred to increase its stake in UTA to 83%
Following the Daimler group's exercise of an option to sell a 15% stake in UTA
at the end of December 2017, Edenred's interest has increased to 66%. The Group
has also been informed by Hermes Mineralöl GmbH, a co-founder company and a
minority shareholder of UTA, of its intention to exercise its option to sell a
17% stake(2). This transaction is subject to approval from the relevant
competition authorities and is expected to be finalized in the first quarter of
2018. Upon completion of the two transactions, Edenred will hold an 83%
interest in UTA.
These operations are expected to have an accretive effect on net profit, Group
share, as soon as 2017, and an unsignificant impact on the consolidated net
Bertrand Dumazy, Chairman and CEO of Edenred, said, "our increased stake in UTA
is, at a time of geographic expansion's acceleration in Eastern Europe, a
significant step for the development of Fleet and mobility solutions, a major
focus of our strategic plan Fast Forward."
Altogether, Edenred's geographic expansion in Eastern Europe and its increase
in UTA's stake represent a cash-out amount of around EUR180 million.
Edenred is the world leader in transactional solutions for companies, employees
and merchants. Whether delivered via card, mobile app, online platform or paper
voucher, all of these solutions mean increased purchasing power for employees,
optimized expense management for companies and additional business for
Edenred's offer is built around three business lines:
* Employee benefits (Ticket Restaurant(r), Ticket Alimentación, Ticket Plus,
* Fleet and mobility solutions (Ticket Log, Ticket Car, UTA, Ticket
* Complementary solutions including corporate payments (Edenred Corporate
Payment), incentives and rewards (Ticket Compliments, Ticket Kadéos) and
public social programs.
The Group brings together a unique network of 43 million employees, 750,000
companies and public institutions, and 1.4 million affiliated merchants.
Listed on the Euronext Paris stock exchange and part of the CAC Next 20 index,
Edenred operates in 42 countries, with close to 8,000 employees. In 2016, the
Group managed almost EUR20 billion in transactions, of which 70% were carried
out via card, mobile device or the web.
The logos and other trademarks mentioned and featured in this press release are
registered trademarks of Edenred S.A., its subsidiaries or third parties. They
may not be used for commercial purposes without prior written consent from
(2) The UTA minority shareholders' options to sell 49% in the amount of EUR247
million was accounted in Edenred's financial statements in the first half of
2017. Following the process initiated by Hermes Mineralöl GmbH announcement of
its intention to exercise its put option, the Eckstein family will continue to
hold an option to sell the remaining 17% of UTA's share capital.
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