Europcar to Buy Vanguard's European Rental Business

Europcar said on Monday it would buy the European business of Vanguard Car Rental Holdings LLC for 670 million euros ($862.4 million), bolstering its position as Europe's top car rental company, according to Reuters.

Europcar and Vanguard, which operates the National and Alamo brands in Britain, also sealed a transatlantic partnership that will give Europcar's clients access to Vanguard's network in North America, the statement said.

The deal, which values Vanguard EMEA at 12.7 times its estimated 2006 operating income, must be approved by competition authorities, Reuters reports.

Vanguard EMEA operates a fleet of 43,000 vehicles and had 2005 sales of 405 million euros with over 2 million rental contracts. It makes 84 percent of its revenue in Britain, where it is the market leader. It employs 32,000 people.

Europcar, with 2005 sales of 1.28 billion euros, a fleet of more than 200,000 vehicles and close to 7 million rental contracts, is Europe's leading car rental company.

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