Clearwater International UK advises Centriq on its sale to Körber

Clearwater International UK has advised the shareholders of Centriq Group Ltd. (Centriq), a provider of IT solutions to the logistics, supply chain and retail sectors, on its sale to Körber AG.

Centriq Group is headquartered in the UK with operations in France, Germany and the US.  It is the holding company for Voiteq and Cirrus Logistics.  Voiteq delivers voice-oriented solutions across the full-spectrum of warehouse activities that are built around its middleware product, “VoiceMan”.  Together they allow workflows in a warehouse to be directed, measured, monitored, tracked, and reported, improving productivity and providing meaningful operational data.  Cirrus Logistics’ decision support software products include: CLASS, the industry standard for warehouse design and simulation, Seaberth, vessel berth scheduling used in ports globally and Cost2Serv, logistics planning and optimisation.

Centriq Group will sit within Körber’s Logistics Systems business area and complements Körber’s strong North American voice business, Vitech, creating one of the world’s largest and most experienced Honeywell Vocollect voice integration teams. The combined organisation offers local and global customers the widest range of proven products and services, to enable them to gain the substantial benefits of voice directed work.

The Clearwater International team consisted of Director Wesley Fell-Smith and Partner and International Head of TMT, Carl Houghton, Senior Associate Daniel Hart and Associate Kirsten Handley. Partner Mark Taylor, Director Tom Barnwell and Associate Director David Grassby provided Debt Advisory support.

“ With the successful acquisition of Centriq, a leading provider of innovative warehouse solutions, we have added another key component to our logistics portfolio. Its excellent team will enable us to strengthen our internationally leading position in the SCM segment with access to multinational project opportunities.

“Moreover, we will bring added value to our existing and future customers as we will be able to offer a more comprehensive product and service portfolio, provided by our logistics software companies HighJump, Inconso, DMLogic and Aberle Software, and now Centriq.”

Stephan Seifert, Chairman of the Group Executive Board at Körber AG

“ Speaking on behalf of the whole management team at Centriq, we are very excited about joining the successful logistics systems business area and the Körber Group as a whole. For our team of certified technical voice experts that serve some 300 clients at 500 sites with award-winning products already, the prospect of joint further growth comes at the right time.

“ We estimate that more than 90% of warehouses across the world are yet to adopt voice technology. Together with the existing SCM portfolio of Körber Logistics Systems, we will be able to strengthen our international platform and – thanks to the integrated offerings portfolio – provide more benefits for our customers.

“The Clearwater International team’s advice on deal strategy, from tailoring a process that worked for us through to negotiations with bidders and potential bidders, was invaluable to realising the right outcome for the shareholders with the right partner for our business. The team were not afraid to provide appropriate challenges when required and were completely committed throughout, managing multiple complex work streams across Europe, the UK and the US, to realise this completion. It certainly helped that we also enjoyed working with the team!”

David Stanhope, CEO of Centriq Group, Ltd.

“ As supply chains become increasingly more complex with leaner and more efficient models, integral to maximising profit levels, there has also been a significant increase in the adoption of automation and software solutions. We worked with David and the team to find the right partner for the business where there was a strong strategic and cultural fit and we wish them well as they continue to grow the business with Körber’s support.”

Wesley Fell-Smith, Director, Clearwater International