Gnewt Cargo van in London

Menzies Distribution has bought fully electric final-mile delivery firm Gnewt Cargo for an undisclosed sum.

London-based Gnewt Cargo runs 100 electric vehicles in the city, and Menzies said the acquisition will support its drive to build a neutral, UK-wide parcel consolidation service while boosting its green portfolio.

Menzies MD Greg Michael added it would give the operator a "stronger, cleaner presence in the London market". A spokesman for Menzies told MT the Gnewt Cargo name would remain in place, as would its founders and directors Sam Clarke and Matthew Linnecar.

Menzies said it was "examining opportunities" to use Gnewt's fleet for its own operation, but Gnewt Cargo will continue servicing its own contracts.

Michael added: "Acquiring Gnewt was an exciting opportunity for us to advance our sustainability agenda while growing our neutral consolidation offer to the parcel market.

“Everyone recognises that goods need to be moved in and around congested city centres. The Gnewt model shows it can be done successfully while minimising environmental impacts."

In its most recently published results for the year ended 31 January 2015, Gnewt Cargo recorded turnover of £2.5m and pre-tax profit of £100,368.

Last month Menzies backed out of talks to be bought by DX Group, after the potential buyer predicted significant losses in its upcoming results. However the Menzies spokesman said the Gnewt acquisition was "considered independently and entirely on its own merits".

The operator also boosted its coverage in Ireland earlier this year, when it bought EM News Distribution for €3.6m.