Brittany Ferries have made offer for Condor, say media reports
BRITTANY Ferries have formally submitted an offer to buy Condor, the French ferry company’s president has said.
Speaking to French newspaper Ouest-France, Jean-Marc Roué confirmed the news but said he thought that other businesses would also be submitting an offer.
The news follows another report from the same newspaper in June that the French-based shipping company was putting in the offer to counter a ‘rapid-expansion plan’ from one of its competitors, Danish company DFDS.
The article also said that the move would secure vital ports – St Malo, Poole and Portsmouth – from their competitors.
However, it has been rumoured that other carriers, such as Stena and Irish Ferries, could also be interested.
Condor is owned by the Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund 2, which is controlled by Macquarie Group, an Australian Investment Banking company.
The fund has now come to the end of its fixed term and the business plans to sell the assets within it.
If the deal with Brittany Ferries is successful, it would not be the first time the two companies have shared business interests. In 2001, Condor began operating a Poole-Cherbourg service for Brittany Ferries. The operation ran until May 2008.
Condor was founded in 1964, first only operating passenger services between France and the Channel Islands. A link to the UK came into operation in 1987.
The company carries over one million passengers a year, 200,000 passenger vehicles and 100,000 cargo vehicles between the UK, Channel Islands and France.
Established in 1973, using a former Israeli tank carrier to ply a route between Roscoff and Plymouth, Brittany Ferries now runs nine routes between the UK, Ireland, France and Spain, out of 11 different ports.
A spokesman for Brittany Ferries declined to comment on the proposed offer despite Mr Roué’s comments.