123fahrschule SE Acquires Driving Simulator Maker FOERST GmbH

123fahrschule SE acquires FOERST GmbH, a driving simulator manufacturer, in a mid-six-figure deal. The acquisition aims to increase simulator use in driving license training, driven by upcoming regulations and potential CO2 savings.

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Bijay Laxmi
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123fahrschule SE Acquires Driving Simulator Maker FOERST GmbH

123fahrschule SE Acquires Driving Simulator Maker FOERST GmbH

123fahrschule SE, a digitally driven driving school chain based in Cologne, Germany, has concluded a share purchase agreement to acquire FOERST GmbH, a driving simulator manufacturer in Wiehl, Germany. The acquisition, expected to be completed on July 1, 2024, subject to certain conditions, is anticipated to increase the use of simulators in driving licence training due to upcoming regulations and potential CO2 savings.

Why this matters: This acquisition marks a significant shift in the driving school industry, as it prepares for the integration of driving simulators into driver training, which could lead to a reduction in carbon emissions and improved training efficiency. As regulations evolve, this move could set a precedent for the adoption of simulator-based training in other countries.

FOERST GmbH, a pioneer in driving simulation, launched the world's first commercial driving simulator in 1976. The company develops and produces simulators for cars, lorries, and buses, used domestically and internationally for driver training and other applications. The purchase price for the acquisition is a mid-six-figure amount, which can be paid in full or in part in shares of 123fahrschule SE by the end of 2026.

123fahrschule SE expects driving simulators to play a greater role in driving licence training in Germany due to the amendment to the learner driver training regulations (Fahrschülerausbildungsordnung) currently being implemented. With driving school vehicles with manual gearboxes no longer available from manufacturers, 123fahrschule anticipates that manual training will shift completely to simulators, making training more cost-effective, efficient, and faster for students.

Through the takeover, 123fahrschule SE expects to reduce capital expenditure for the roll-out of driving simulators in its own branches. The company plans to expand FOERST GmbH's product portfolio with its own software elements and offer the optimized product range nationally and internationally in the driving school and education market.

The acquisition of FOERST GmbH by 123fahrschule SE marks a significant step in the integration of driving simulators into driver training in Germany. With anticipated regulatory changes and the potential for CO2 savings, this move positions 123fahrschule SE to capitalize on the growing demand for simulator-based training in the driving school industry.

Key Takeaways

  • 123fahrschule SE acquires FOERST GmbH, a driving simulator manufacturer.
  • Acquisition expected to increase simulator use in driving licence training.
  • Regulatory changes in Germany to boost demand for simulator-based training.
  • Deal to reduce 123fahrschule's capital expenditure on simulator roll-out.
  • Potential for CO2 savings and improved training efficiency.