More than 100 years of history

For over a century now, Geodis has been developing transport and logistics activities according to a strategy that we make sure to keep up to date. From transporting goods by train along the Paris-Rouen line to our logistics platforms around the world, the Group continuously delivers relevant, reliable responses to the logistics challenges of today and tomorrow.

International growth


In 1904, Emile Calberson founded a rail freight company in Le Havre, shipping goods to Rouen and Paris. At the time, its business was transporting luggage and parcels by passenger train, and then delivering them from the train station to the end customer.
In 1920, the company shifted its focus to road transport and changed its name to Société des Transports Routiers Calberson (Calberson Road Transport Company). It went on to expand throughout France, becoming the top French express shipping company.
The business was taken over by SCETA, a subsidiary of SNCF (France’s public railway company), in 1961.


International expansion of the network

In the early 1950s, Calberson began marketing its services in North Africa. Starting in 1970, Calberson opened new offices in the Netherlands, Great Britain, Italy and Germany. In 1984, the company went public on the Paris Stock Exchange’s unlisted securities market. Toward the end of 1995, a merger with other SCETA Group subsidiaries gave rise to Compagnie Générale Calberson (Calberson General Company), doing business as Geodis. After being privatized in 1996, the Geodis Group reorganized into four business branches: Express, Road, Logistics and Overseas.


With the 2006 acquisition of TNT Freight Management (renamed Geodis Wilson), the Group strengthened its position in Scandinavia, the Americas, Asia and Australia. By doing so, it became one of Europe’s premier freight forwarding operators. In 2008, the Group acquired IBM’s worldwide logistics monitoring platform, which resulted in Geodis’s fifth line of business, Supply Chain Optimization. That same year, Geodis became a wholly owned subsidiary of SNCF.

In 2009, Geodis continued to pursue its external growth plans with the acquisition of two of the four divisions of Giraud International: its steel division and its Central and Eastern European zone.


Strategic acquisitions to strengthen our business lines


In 2015, the Group brought all its brands together under the Geodis brand name.

That same year, it acquired OHL (Ozburn-Hessey Logistics), headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee, USA. At the time, OHL had a staff of more than 10,000 employees and 120 distribution centres that provided multiple supply chain management services to clients in North America.

In 2021, Geodis reinforced its presence in Europe by acquiring the haulier Pekaes in Poland, along with the companies Gandon and Perrier in France, with the aim of consolidating its road network across the continent.

In 2022, Geodis acquired the Singapore-based contract logistics specialist Keppel, followed by Need It Now Delivers, the US leader in express distribution. These two strategic acquisitions bolstered Geodis’s ambitions as a global logistics provider capable of offering a comprehensive portfolio of services to its clients.

In 2023, the Group significantly strengthened its operations in a core country, Germany, when it acquired trans-o-flex, the leader in the express delivery of pharmaceutical products and other temperature controlled goods.

Key dates


Transports Rapides Calberson is founded in Le Havre


The company is renamed Transports Routiers Calberson


SCETA takes over Société des Transports Routiers Calberson


The Geodis Group is created from the merger of Compagnie Générale Calberson, SCETA Transport and SCETA International


​​The Group is privatized by a decree issued on 20 August 1996 and reorganized into four lines of business


The Group acquires TNT’s freight forwarding division, making it one of Europe’s top freight management operators


Geodis’s capital increase is a resounding success


Geodis is incorporated into SNCF’s new Transport & Logistics branch and acquires IBM Global Logistics, creating the Supply Chain Optimization business line


Geodis acquires OHL (Ozburn-Hessey Logistics), expanding its freight forwarding business in the United States, and unifies its business portfolio under a single brand name


Gartner identified Geodis as a “Leader” in its Magic Quadrant for Third-Party Logistics, Worldwide


Geodis acquires Pekaes in Poland and, in France, Transports Gandon (temperature controlled shipping) and Transports Perrier (pallet shipping)


Geodis acquires Keppel Logistics (e-commerce in Asia-Pacific) and Need It Now Delivers (last mile deliveries in the US)