BTL aquires Casteletti

BTL, one of the largest transport and logistics groups in Europe, has acquired all the shares in the Swiss-Italian Group, Castelletti SA. "We want to strengthen our position in this part of Europe and it will be easier to develop the company with one owner instead of three," says Eddie Sterner, Chief Executive of the BTL Land Transport Division. Previously, BTL owned 49%, SBB (the Swiss state-owned railway) 49% and the French transport company Fatton 2% of Castelletti SA. BTL has acquired 51% of the shares from SBB and Fatton and is now the sole owner of Castelletti. "The Italian market is becoming increasingly important. Castelletti is a major network partner for the German, Austrian and Scandinavian companies within the joint Schenker-BTL land transport network. The respective Board of Management of BTL and Schenker has decided not to merge Schenker Italiana and Castelletti. Castelletti will continue the extensive cooperation also with other well-reputed transport companies in Europe and overseas," says Eddie Sterner. Castelletti's net sales in 1997 totalled SEK 2.7 billion. The total workforce is just over 800. The Group has subsidiaries in Italy, Switzerland, Germany and the USA. On the Italian domestic market, Castelletti has 25 branches. The Group's operations include land transport by road and rail, air and sea freight and special transport of furniture, chilled food, fruit and vegetables. At present, 11% of operations are rail transport, which will be developed further both within the BTL and Schenker organisations. The Group's name will continue to be Castelletti and Helmut Meraner will remain as CEO. "We have good market coverage throughout Italy and can offer a wide range of services. With one strong, long-term owner, we have a great potential to continue the development of all parts of our business in Europe and overseas," says Helmut Meraner, CEO of Castelletti SA. BTL AB (publ) For further information please contact: Eddie Sterner, Chief Executive of the BTL Land Transport Division, tel. +46 31 7038210 Helmut Meraner, Chief Executive Officer of Castelletti, tel. +41 91 6957314 BTL is one of the largest transport and logistics groups in Europe and the market leader in Scandinavia. The Group also has significant operations in Asia, Australia, New Zealand and the USA. Net sales in 1997 totalled SEK 18 billion. BTL has 11,000 employees. Through the partnership with Schenker for European land transport operations, a new Schenker-BTL network is being established. The joint land transport network covers 30 European countries and has a total workforce of 20,000.