- Lineage Logistics raised $1.6 billion in new equity for business growth and to continue its investment in technology and automation, according to a Tuesday press release.
- The cold storage provider will use the equity in part to fund future M&A, adding to its growing list of recent acquisitions and in response to the global demand for cold storage.
- Lineage Logistics also announced new arrivals to its board — all with extensive experience in real estate investment and management, tipping its hat at the boom in property acquisition expected to follow.
Lineage Logistics raising more than a billion dollars means it can invest in more properties and more automation as cold storage demand is forecast to continue. More customers than ever are buying groceries online during the pandemic, translating into the need for even more cold storage to fulfill online food orders.
Pharmaceutical supply chains will also require temperature-controlled space and logistics as the world awaits a coronavirus vaccine.
Lineage aims to develop "the world's most fully automated warehouses."
The company's focus on automation is in line with its steps to patent technology for the automated location of inventory in the warehouse. Machine learning to reduce energy consumption, temperature automation to eliminate waste and the usage of aerospace principles to preserve produce, are some of the other technologies listed on its website.
"Lineage uses thermodynamics, mathematics, AI and robotics ... that protect the integrity of its customers’ temperature-controlled food," a company spokesperson said. It also owns a proprietary machine-learning algorithm that studies how buildings interact with the environment, then optimizes engine room operations.
Lineage is the largest cold chain supplier in the world with more than 5,000 customers. The new capital gain will expand its current footprint of 1.9 billion cubic feet. In 2020 alone, the company announced 16 acquisitions and executed on 15 new expansions and greenfield facilities, as stated in the press release.
Americold, the second-largest cold chain provider globally, completed two acquisitions last month, valued at $107.5 million total. The deals expand the company to 183 facilities in five countries.
The two main players in the cold chain industry rapidly are enlarging. Lineage Logistics' retention and attainment of investors paves the way for the cold storage provider to cash in on the expected growth in the coming years.