Blue Bird Group in Talks on Logistics Unit Stake Sale

  • Group in talks with Japanese and Malaysian potential partners
  • Blue Bird considers rights issue to expand taxi fleet

Taxi operator PT Blue Bird’s parent company is in talks with investors for a possible $200 million sale of a stake in its logistics unit, Chairman Bayu Djokosoetono said.

Blue Bird Group is seeking private investment in PT Iron Bird Logistic, the merged entity of its two delivery units that’s worth “trillions of rupiah,” with a view to offer shares to the public later on, Djokosoetono said in Jakarta. The company is in talks with potential partners from Japan and Malaysia, and seeks to complete the deal in the second half of this year.

“The taxi business is still the group’s major contributor, but in terms of growth rate, logistics is a good business to develop in the future,” Djokosoetono said.

Logistics costs account for almost a quarter of Southeast Asia’s largest economy, with a dilapidated transport network a constraint on growth, according to the World Bank. President Joko Widodo is boosting spending on the country’s infrastructure and ports to try to reduce transport times.

Blue Bird’s focus on logistics comes as Indonesia’s taxi operators are now competing against ride-sharing applications such as Uber Technologies Inc. and GrabTaxi Holdings Pte. Hundreds of taxi drivers held a strike on Monday calling for the startups to be blocked until they have permits to provide public transport services. Blue Bird shares have almost halved from a 12,100 rupiah peak in January 2015 to close at 6,100 rupiah on Friday.

Blue Bird is considering a rights issue to expand its taxi fleet, Djokosoetono said.

(Corrects attribution in last paragraph.)
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