Press Release | Gütersloh/Casablanca, 01/07/2019

Bertelsmann and Saham Complete Combination of Worldwide CRM Businesses

From the left: Thomas Mackenbrock (CEO Arvato CRM Solutions), Moulay Mhamed Elalamy (Spokesperson for Saham) and Thomas Rabe (Chairman & CEO of Bertelsmann).

  • Transaction closed on January 4, 2019
  • Partners each hold 50 percent of the new company
  • Global presence in 25 countries; leading market positions in Europe, Africa and the Middle East
  • Growth strategy to further advance regional expansion and digital services for customers
  • Thomas Mackenbrock is the new CEO
  • The new company’s chairman of the Supervisory Board will be appointed by Saham.

Bertelsmann, the international media, services, and education company, and Morocco's Saham Group have combined their worldwide Customer Relationship Management (CRM) businesses. The transaction was completed with effect from January 4, 2019. The two shareholders had already agreed on a long-term partnership in September 2018. Bertelsmann and Saham each hold a 50-percent stake in the new services company, which will employ around 48,000 people in 25 countries and generate revenues of approximately €1.2 billion. The new company is based in Luxembourg.

Thomas Rabe, Chairman & CEO of Bertelsmann, said: “Today is an important milestone in the further development of Arvato's CRM business. The new company holds leading market positions in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and also has a strong presence in the Americas and Asia. It has clear growth targets and will invest heavily in the years ahead, into the further expansion of its global footprint and the comprehensive digital transformation of its entire portfolio of services. For Bertelsmann, this newly sealed partnership with Saham also provides a key to the growth markets of the African continent.”

Saham spokesperson Moulay Mhamed Elalamy commented: “Our long-term shared vision with Bertelsmann is to build a global leader of outsourced services, offering to our clients a unique geographical coverage, a sectorial expertise in line with the highest standards as well as high-value services using state-of-the-art technologies. We are convinced that value will be created by leveraging human capabilities and new technologies, and are willing to invest heavily in both to harness these opportunities.”

With the closing, the management structure of the new company has also been determined. Thomas Mackenbrock, who has been responsible for Arvato’s worldwide CRM business to date, will head the new company as its CEO, as already announced in September. The Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the new company will be appointed by Saham. Bertelsmann will appoint four Board members, including its Chairman & CEO Thomas Rabe, and Saham will appoint three.

Thomas Mackenbrock said: “The combination opens a new exciting chapter for Arvato and Saham's CRM businesses. Over the past weeks, we have worked hard to establish the preconditions for realizing the partnership that has now been successfully completed. Now we will focus fully on putting our growth and investment strategy into action.” The new company intends to present this strategy and the new name in the weeks ahead.

The combined CRM business has around 25,000 employees in 10 European countries, namely France, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Georgia, and Estonia. In addition, it has 14,000 employees in Egypt, Morocco, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Togo, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia and 9,000 employees in Asia (India, the Philippines, Malaysia), and the Americas (Canada, the U.S., Mexico, Peru, Colombia).

About Bertelsmann
Bertelsmann is a media, services and education company that operates in about 50 countries around the world. It includes the broadcaster RTL Group, the trade book publisher Penguin Random House, the magazine publisher Gruner + Jahr, the music company BMG, the service provider Arvato, the Bertelsmann Printing Group, the Bertelsmann Education Group and Bertelsmann Investments, an international network of funds. The company has 119,000 employees and generated revenues of €17.2 billion in the 2017 financial year. Bertelsmann stands for entrepreneurship and creativity. This combination promotes first-class media content and innovative service solutions that inspire customers around the world.

About Saham
Saham Group is a pan-African group operating in value-added services such as healthcare, real estate, education, and outsourced services. It has also built a leading African insurance group, which it has valued at USD 2 billion and sold recently to the Sanlam Group. The group was created in 1995 and has operated in 27 countries across the Middle East and Africa. Saham Group had a turnover of USD 1.4 billion in 2017 and employs over 16,000 people. The outsourcing division of Saham Group offers a modern, multilingual platform and operates in seven countries with over 14,000 employees. The Saham Group’s values are rooted in customer centricity and operational excellence.