Ice Bear enters into strategic co-operation with Great Dane

Chinese company Henan Bingxiong Refrigerated Truck Co., Ltd (Ice Bear), has raised a new round of financing led by Baird Capital Partners Asia, CCI, and CCI's portfolio company Great Dane, a 110-year old manufacturer of dry van, platform and refrigerated trailers and refrigerated truck bodies.

The capital will support the expansion of Ice Bear's manufacturing facilities in Henan and Shanghai, as well as the company's growing domestic customer base. As part of the investment, Ice Bear will leverage Great Dane's global operating resources and engineering talent to grow its leading market position in the domestic Chinese market. Great Dane pioneered the refrigerated trailer industry in the United States and today is the leading producer of refrigerated truck and trailer technology.

Established in 1993, Ice Bear manufactures insulated and refrigerated trucks designed to carry perishable freight at specific temperatures. The company currently has a leading market share position in China, with a diversified national customer base and supported by one of the largest national sales networks.

“We are excited to have Baird, CCI and Great Dane as partners as we continue to grow our business,” said Jianqing Lu, CEO, President and Chairman of the Board of Ice Bear. “The global relationships, operating resources and industry expertise of these investors make them a significant asset for our company and our customers.”

The cold supply chain market in China is underdeveloped compared to developed countries. In China, most perishable foods, such as meat, fruits, vegetables, dairy and soybean products are shipped by non-refrigerated trucks. It is estimated that the lack of effective cold supply chain systems in China results in 20-40% food spoilage loss, valued at over US$65 billion annually. Rising income levels and higher food safety demands by both the Chinese government and Chinese consumers are expected to drive a more sophisticated cold supply chain and the need for refrigerated trucks.

“We are thrilled to be investing in Ice Bear alongside Baird,” said Bill Crown, President and CEO of Great Dane. “Mr. Lu and the entire Ice Bear team have built a leading company in the China market. Our leading market position in the refrigerated truck and trailer market will allow us to bring enormous resources to Ice Bear, and help them capitalize on the growing need for cold chain solutions in China.”

“For the last three years we have been working closely with Great Dane and CCI on identifying opportunities in the cold chain industry in China,” said Brett Tucker, Partner, Baird Capital Partners Asia. “We believe Great Dane's wealth of operating and industry experience, combined with our on-the-ground investment and operating team in China, will bring significant value to Ice Bear. We look forward to working with Ice Bear management to accelerate the company's growth and expand its market leadership.”

As part of the transaction, Dean Engelage of Great Dane and Brett Tucker of Baird Capital Partners Asia will join the Ice Bear Board of Directors.

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