Greg Michael Menzies Distribution_Vehicle

Menzies Distribution has announced the acquisition of Scotland-based logistics specialist JBT Distribution.

The transaction extends Menzies' network coverage with the addition of 200 vehicles and six operating sites.

JBT boasts annual sales of over £23 million and sits alongside Menzies in Motor Transport’s Top 100 logistics companies by size.

Headquartered in Bathgate, West Lothian, with further depots in Aberdeen, Inverness, East Kilbride, Lerwick (Shetland) and Kirkwall (Orkney), the acquisition adds to Menzies’ geographical reach across Scotland and its growing blue-chip customer base. It also provides further capability to Menzies’ growing range of B2B retail logistics services.

JBT has an 'outstanding record of reliability in providing solutions across a number of complementary sectors', Menzies said. These include retail, healthcare - with a notable specialism in temperature controlled logistics - packaging and parcel home delivery.

The acquisition represents Menzies' fourth major strategic move in the last six months. In December 2020, it bought Bibby Distribution, now Menzies Distribution Solutions. The move unlocked geographic potential for Menzies while adding 38 new operating sites and a large, young fleet to the well-established Menzies platform.

In January 2021, former Asda chief executive Andy Clarke was appointed as non-executive chairman, while only last month former Booker chief executive Charles Wilson joined the board as a non-executive director and new significant investor.

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In September 2018 Endless LLP, the private equity investor, acquired Menzies Distribution as part of the business’s separation from John Menzies PLC. The newly independent company outlined at that time how it would develop the business through widening its service offering and geographical coverage.

Commenting on the acquisition, Menzies chief executive Greg Michael (pictured) said: “We are gaining momentum at pace as we execute our ambitious strategy for growth and are delighted to acquire JBT.

"We believe that through combining the complementary business with Menzies, there are significant opportunities to grow both businesses through unlocking further geographical capability and expanding services to both sets of customers in Scotland and throughout the UK and Ireland.

"For both our businesses’ customers, it will be very much business as usual and we look forward to supporting their growth in the coming years and working with Robert Gordon, Donald Carmichael and the rest of the team at JBT to help deliver this. We warmly welcome our new colleagues and look forward to the next phase of our journey as an enlarged group.”

JBT director Robert Gordon added: “The directors of JBT Distribution are delighted to announce the acquisition by Menzies Distribution. We believe that Menzies is aligned with the future strategic and growth plan in the sectors in which we operate and will enhance the service offering of the business both locally and nationally.

"There will be exciting and new opportunities for the staff at JBT, whose dedicated input to the business has taken it to the position it is in today. We wish them all continued success within the larger business group and know they will continue to support the customer base with the same level of dedication that has always been evidenced.”

Added Andrew Ross, partner at Endless LLP: “We are delighted to be supporting Menzies Distribution with their second acquisition in six months. This acquisition further accelerates the momentum in our strategy to transform and diversify the operations of this business. We look forward to working with Robert Gordon, Donald Carmichael and the wider JBT team to further grow the business as part of the Menzies group.”