Maersk Acquires U.S. Customs House Broker Vandegrift

Eleonora Maersk Los Angeles Record
The Maersk containership Eleonora Maersk pictured at APM Terminals Los Angeles. Photo: APM Terminals

A.P. Moller-Maersk has acquired US-based Customs House Broker, Vandegrift Inc., underscoring the shipping giant’s focus on the logistics sector in 2019.

The deal marks Maersk’s first acquisition of the year.

Maersk says Customs House Brokerage is a key component in its strategy to become an integrated container logistics company, providing end-to-end solutions to customers. The acquisition will enhance Maersk’s commercial solutions pipeline and strengthen the logistics presence in the North America market, the company stated.

“Customers have been asking us to simplify the complexity of their global supply chains and reduce their risk so we analyzed the North America market to see who had the best reputation in the brokerage/trade compliance industry and deliver immediate results to all vertical segments of our account base. Our findings identified Vandegrift’s top tier, professional service provider reputation, strong operating platform of services, stellar people and culture ideally fit our expectations and commercial approach as One Company,” said Klaus Rud Sejling, Head of Global Logistics and Services at Maersk.

Vandegrift is a customs brokerage business established in 1951. Based in Clark, New Jersey, its core business is customs brokerage with 170 people in twelve offices. The company also specializes in Trade Compliance with a team of former U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials as well as individuals with backgrounds in customs brokerage, retail and law.

“Transportation costs and trade compliance risk management are a strategic issue for our customers. We believe we have an opportunity to better design a more holistic customs brokerage and trade compliance plan and overarching strategy for customers. This will set them up for long term success, improve their cost and risk structures and use our combined team expertise, digital tools and process improvement thanks to this acquisition,” Sejling added.

Maersk said the transaction closed 8 February 2019. Pricing and terms were not disclosed.