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A History of DFDS Mergers and Acquisitions

DFDS came into being as the result of a merger of three Danish shipping companies. Since then DFDS has grown continuously through mergers and acquisitions.

In recent years, DFDS has acquired the following companies to expand and develop our European ferry and logistics services.

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Norfolk Line

In 2010, DFDS acquired ferry and logistics company Norfolkline from A.P. Moller - Maersk. This was the largest acquisition of DFDS ever and added ferry routes in The English Channel and the North Sea as well as terminals in Dunkirk and Rotterdam along with a major logistics operation. Through this acquisition, DFDS grew its business by 70% and became a new company with a new structure.

Since then DFDS has grown its logistics and ferry activities considerably through a number of acquisitions, such as:


Karlshamn Express

Sweden-based road, sea and rail transport company Karlshamn Express was acquired by DFDS in 2013, bringing with them a 20,000 m2 warehouse authorised to store alcohol, a web-based inventory program and railway forwarding to all Baltic ports.

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In 2014, DFDS acquired the UK/French logistics operator STEF Transport’s activities in Scotland and Newlyn.

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Scandinavian Shipping Line

In 2012, DFDS acquired Scandinavian Shipping Line that operated the route Kapellskär-Paldiski.

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Acquired in 2013, East UK-based Quayside brings cold chain solutions and management to DFDS, an area in which we aspire to offer customers a full range of solutions.

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Shetland, with its 35 trucks, 96 temperature-controlled trailers and 40-foot containers with available flat beds and curtain sides, was acquired by DFDS in 2016. DFDS now transports goods from IKEA's Edinburgh depot to Shetland.

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Sweden-based Italcargo was acquired by DFDS in 2017 and offers full and part-load transport logistics services between Sweden and Italy, with 24-hour service and express shipments to most European countries, to the DFDS group.

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Alpha Trans

In 2018, DFDS acquired the Dutch company Alрhа Trаnѕ and their fleet of 720 flatbed trailers and 125 trucks serving continental Europe, UK, and Ireland.

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UN Ro-Ro

In 2018, DFDS made its financially largest investment ever by acquiring all shares of the Mediaterranean freight ferry operator UN Ro-Ro that is based in Türkiye and operates ferry routes between Türkiye and Italy/France/Greece as well as rail services between the European ports and industrial regions in the EU.

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In 2019, DFDS acquired the Dutch logistics company Huisman that offers part load services to and from the UK, among other things.

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Freeco Logistics

In 2019, DFDS acquired the Finnish logistics company Freeco that operates in Finland and to and from the Continent and the Baltic states.

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In 2019, DFDS acquired Fish delivery and distribution company Colley Brothers in Grimsby.

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