Distribution Industry (Last Leg Delivery)

Q4 2023: Mergers and Acquisitions Trend Report

Industry Overview

  • The Couriers and Local Delivery Services industry has observed rising growth due to a combination of factors, including; an increase in consumer orders placed online and delivered through third-party services, and a higher demand for temperature-controlled shipping from the healthcare industry
  • The Distribution Industry is expected to grow significantly over the next decade, driven by a strong expansion of e-commerce sales allowing new companies to enter the market, leading to an anticipated 7.1% increase in the number of enterprises in the industry in the next five years.
  • The industry is very competitive and has high barriers to entry due to its oligopolistic nature in the United States.
  • Key players are the United Parcel Service, FedEx, and Deutsche Post Ag.

Key Industry Trends

  • Industry revenue fluctuates with overall consumer spending and sentiment, which dictates the demand for goods that are distributed by industry operators.
  • B2B partnerships account for a large portion of the Distribution Industry revenue because companies rely on couriers to deliver key goods and materials.
  • E-commerce sales represent a vital growth area for industry operators. E-commerce sales have expanded as a wide range of product offerings, the ease of providing services and making purchases, and social media influence entices consumers to use E-commerce channels.

Recent M&A Transactions

Historical Performance

  • The last few years saw drastic changes across the industry as brick-and-mortar stores began to be taken over by e-commerce sales. This development was exacerbated by the COVID-19 Pandemic.
  • The Distribution Industry revenue has increased at a CAGR of 5.9% over the past five years (2018 – 2023).

Future Industry Growth

  • Competition from substitutes including the US Postal Service and Amazon.com, will negatively affect industry performance in the coming years. Amazon is able to provide most goods for consumer and deliver them next day, giving a clear advantage over industry operators, as this service is usually free with a monthly subscription.
  • Many mid-sized local delivery companies will be acquired by larger companies seeking to decrease competition.
  • Industry revenue is anticipated to increase 2.7% annually to $188.9 billion over the next five years.

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