Medical 3pl giant Movianto is to be sold by parent company Celesio to US firm Owens & Minor for €130m.

Celesio says it wants to divest of logistics arm Movianto, which has been part of the German-based company since 2004,  to concentrate on its core sectors of pharmaceutical wholesaling and pharmacies, which accounts for 95% of the group’s business.

It adds that the divestment will happen more swiftly than originally planned due to “the buyer’s reputation for quality and integrity”. Celesio will combine the sale with the opportunity to establish a partnership with Owens & Minor, which distributes medical products and operates third-party logistics in America.

Owens says it plans to keep the Movianto teams and logistics centres, which employ a total of 1,800 staff across Europe, intact.

“The intended acquisition of Movianto provides Owens & Minor with a premier European healthcare logistics franchise, enabling us to significantly expand our existing third-party logistics presence and scale,” says Craig Smith, president & chief executive officer at Owens & Minor. “Our manufacturer partners have increasingly expressed interest in working with Owens & Minor on a global basis, and Movianto provides us with an exceptional platform in Europe.”

Movianto in the UK is headquartered in Bedford and employs approximately 700 people. Annual results for the year ended 31 December 2011 revealed a pre-tax loss of £1.7m on a turnover of £54.8m.