© Frank Harms

Allcargo Logistics has dismissed market rumours – aired for some time – that it has been working towards a sale of its non-vessel-operating common carrier (NVOCC) and cargo consolidation subsidiary, ECU Worldwide.

The latest statement came in response to a query from The Loadstar. 

“At the outset, we wish to clarify that queries raised in your email are based on inaccurate and unfounded information,” said Allcargo. “We prefer to refrain from commenting on speculative information.”

The genesis of that speculation could, in large part, be traced to the Mumbai-based 3PL’s announcement in September that Allcargo Belgium, which operates the ECU network, had appointed investment banker Jefferies Financial to evaluate “fundraising opportunities”.

The persistence of such talk sparked rumours that a “leading global shipping and logistics group” was in talks to acquire ECU, and efforts to seek further industry information on this were not immediately successful.

Last week, Allcargo made the headlines with a Rs986.4m ($13m) deal to sell its project forwarding and logistics arm to Mumbai-based JM Baxi Group, illustrating its stated “asset-light growth strategy”.

Joint MD Adarsh Hegde said, at the time: “Allcargo Group will continue to drive growth with a sharp focus on asset-light and digitally enabled businesses. We’ll continue to focus on growth areas identified through various transformation projects.”

ECU CEO Tim Tudor recently told The Loadstar the network remained increasingly bullish on the Indian market and that demand for LCL (less-than-container-load) services would continue to grow amid tightening ocean capacity in the wake of widespread sailing disruptions.

ECU has a network of about 300 offices across 80 countries, providing 2,400 direct trade services and door-to-door offerings in 56 global markets. It claims to control some 13% of the global LCL market.

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