Kion Group acquires Handling Automation division of automation specialist Egemin Group

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The Kion Group has signed an agreement with the Belgian automation specialist Egemin Group to purchase its handling automation division for an enterprise value of approximately €72m (US$82m). The transaction is subject to a number of customary conditions and is expected to be closed in the course of the third quarter of 2015.

The Kion Group is one of the world’s two largest suppliers of forklift trucks, warehouse technology and associated services and increases with this acquisition the number of brands in its portfolio to seven. The Wiesbaden, Germany-based company is therefore significantly expanding its expertise and capabilities in system solutions for intralogistics and automation, fields that are seeing increasingly strong demand.

The news comes just two months after Kion’s Linde Material Handling brand launched its first ‘driven by Balyo’ robotic industrial trucks, but iVT understands that Egemin will also work with Linde in Europe, but primarily with Kion’s Still brand in this region. In China, the focus will be on Linde.

Egemin’s handling automation division offers customized solutions for the automation of logistics in warehouses, distribution centres and factories. It delivers automated warehouse systems, automated guided vehicles and in-floor chain conveyors solutions.

In fiscal year 2014, the Egemin Group’s handling automation division generated approximately €76m (US$87m) of revenues with over 300 highly specialised employees. The group’s other divisions – process automation, life sciences, infra atomation, and consulting and services – are not part of this transaction and will continue their activities under a new brand name, shortly to be disclosed.

“By acquiring Egemin’s handling automation activities, the Kion Group is strengthening its expertise and capabilities in the design and management of complex logistics automation projects for the future. Automated material handling solutions will play a crucial role in Industry 4.0 as they facilitate the vision of the smart warehouse and factory,” said Kion Group CEO Gordon Riske (above), when the agreement was signed.

“The fast-growing market for automated logistics and material flow systems is another area where we want to become a leading player. Together, Egemin Automation and the Kion Group have vast potential for innovation that will enable us to provide the best possible solutions for our customers.” The acquisition marks another milestone in the Kion Group’s implementation of its Strategy 2020.

For Egemin Automation, the agreement creates huge opportunities for all its divisions. Jan Vercammen (left) , CEO of Egemin Automation, commented, “Egemin Automation has been working closely with the brands of the Kion Group for many years. Being part of the Kion Group will open up huge growth opportunities for the handling automation division. And it allows the four other divisions of the Egemin Group to focus on the growth of their core activities.”

Jan Vercammen will manage Egemin Automation within the Kion Group and report directly to Kion CEO Gordon Riske. Egemin Automation will be integrated in the Kion Group as an independent company and will be responsible for the group’s project business in the fields of system solutions and automation. The intralogistics systems (ILS) business of Still will be closely linked to Egemin’s handling automation activities.

May 15, 2015 

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Tom is editor of ivtinternational.com and iVT magazine. During his 20 year career in journalism Tom has worked for a diverse range of titles including Men's Health and Cosmopolitan. He also edits iVT's UKi Media & Events stablemate Traffic Technology International.

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