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Cargo Floor, Smile Invest and Essers Family Office (EFO) join forces to accelerate Cargo Floor's growth ambitions

Cargo Floor, Smile Invest and Essers Family Office (EFO) join forces to accelerate Cargo Floor's growth ambitions
17 August 2022

Benelux private equity firm Smile Invest takes a majority stake in Cargo Floor alongside its management and Essers Family Office (EFO), the Belgian investment vehicle of the family behind logistics service provider, Essers. Cargo Floor is the global market leader in horizontal (un)loading solutions focused on the open-top trailer market. This investment will help Cargo Floor realise their continued growth plans outside of Europe.

Cargo Floor, established in 1993, primarily develops and produces the innovative horizontal (un)loading solutions for open-top trailers "Moving Floors", a market in which the company has an undisputed leading position globally. The technology allows bulk goods to be transported efficiently in high volumes, in end markets such as agribulk, waste & recycling and energy & industrial. The Moving Floor is considered a more sustainable alternative to other bulk (un)loading solutions, as, in addition to efficient high-volume bulk transport, it is also well suited for the transport of packaged goods and offers maximum flexibility ("no-empty-mileage"). From the headquarters in Coevorden, Netherlands, the Moving Floors are produced and shipped to trailer builders worldwide.

Frans de Raad (CEO) and Niek Mater (CTO), who have led the company into its leading position within its niche, will remain active in their roles. In addition to Smile Invest, one of the investors in its fund, the Essers family, the family behind the Flemish logistics service provider, Essers, will join as a minority shareholder through their family office EFO. Under the Smile Invest motto "entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs", EFO will contribute significant knowledge and a broad (international) logistics network, which, combined with the experience of Smile Invest, will facilitate the next phase of international growth.

Frans de Raad, CEO at Cargo Floor stated: "The arrival of Smile Invest and Essers Family Office as new investors marks the start of the next phase of Cargo Floor. Smile Invest contributes significant experience in internationalisation, while Essers Family Office has a global network in the logistics sector. In recent years Cargo Floor has become the absolute market leader in Europe. In this new chapter where quality and further expansion are a top priority, we think Smile Invest, with its entrepreneurial network and mentality, will be of great value to us."

Ivo Vincente and Bart Cauberghe, Managing Partners at Smile Invest add: "Cargo Floor is a textbook example of a leading company with a unique, market-leading position within its niche. We are impressed by the professionalism and quality of the organisation combined with the scalable best-in-class production processes. We strongly believe in the international growth ambition in which Cargo Floor can further develop the market and gain market share thanks to their superior product. The innovative nature of the company and product, characterized by the ability for transportation companies to efficiently transport high-volume bulk and to achieve "no-empty-mileage", in order to save costs and operate more sustainably, fits perfectly within our investment focus. We look forward to supporting Cargo Floor in this new phase of growth."


About Smile Invest

Smile Invest (Smart Money for Innovation Leaders) is a European evergreen investment firm with €350m of assets under management, financed by 40 entrepreneurial families and with a long-term focus on innovative growth companies. Smile Invest focuses on companies active in three investment themes: digitalisation, healthcare and sustainability. From its offices in The Hague and Leuven, the team supports ambitious entrepreneurs and management teams in realising their growth plans.


Contact Smile Invest:

Ivo Vincente, Managing Partner • T. +31 622 91 92 32
Bart Cauberghe, Managing Partner • • T. +32 476 33 66 69