bpost CEO: The world is changing at an astonishing pace

bpost CEO: The world is changing at an astonishing pace
bpost  has announced its third quarter 2020 results. Continued strong performance of Parcels & Logistics accelerates the shift in profit contribution of the business and leads to an improved outlook.

Group operating income amounted to EUR 972.9 million, + 10.4% compared to the same period last year and fully attributable to the continued strong results of Parcels & Logistics Europe & Asia and North America.

key figures

  • Group EBIT reported amounts to EUR 65.1 million, + 81.5%. Adjusted EBIT amounts to EUR 69.5 million (margin of 7.1%).
  • Accelerated margin shift. The strong performance of Parcels & Logistics Europe & Asia and North America, attributable to e-commerce, accelerates the shift in profit contribution from the businesses with their combined adjusted EBIT contribution (EUR 38.5 million) quarter in a row exceeds that of Mail & Retail (EUR 35.7 million).
  • Reported EBIT Mail & Retail amounts to EUR 35.1 million. Adjusted EBIT amounts to EUR 35.7 million (7.7% margin), which is only EUR 2.7 million lower than last year and can be explained by strong growth of parcel volumes processed through the postal network for Parcels & Logistics Europe & Asia . Underlying mail volume decline at -8.2% held up well, outperforming the -9% to -11% range stated before COVID-19.
  • Reported EBIT for Parcels & Logistics Europe & Asia amounts to EUR 29.0 million. Adjusted EBIT amounts to EUR 29.7 million (11.3% margin), an increase of EUR 19.4 million and thus almost a tripling. The strong margin improvement can be attributed to strong growth in parcel volumes processed via the postal network. Volumes Parcels B2X + 49.0% higher year-on-year.
  • Reported EBIT for Parcels & Logistics North America amounts to EUR 5.6 million. Adjusted EBIT amounted to EUR 8.7m (2.9% margin), an increase of EUR 14.0m mainly due to Radial North America which delivered continued strong growth of existing customers and customers starting up in 2019 (operating income E-commerce logistics + 25.2%) and therefore benefited from a positive leverage effect.
  • COVID-19. Our number one priority is to ensure the health and safety of our employees and customers. Since this quarter, the impact of COVID-19 is no longer reported separately, as the decoupling of the effects of the pandemic on perceived business development is increasingly artificial and therefore less meaningful.
  • Attack with ransomware. On October 15, 2020, Radial North America was the victim of a ransomware attack that impacted some of Radial’s US operations. Radial has since been able to resume fulfillment activities at all its locations. See note 22 (Significant post-balance sheet events) for more information.
  • Outlook for 2020 Based on the current situation and facts and taking into account the financial impact of the ransomware attack, the previously reconfirmed range for adjusted EBIT of the group in 2020 could be revised upwards from EUR 240-270 million to at least EUR 270 million EUR. However, due to the second wave of the pandemic and the lockdown measures taken, visibility for the fourth quarter is limited.
  • The strategic update and revised capital allocation framework, including the new dividend policy, will be announced to the market on December 8, 2020.
  • S&P reaffirms long and short term credit rating on A / A-1, stable outlook.

Commenting on the results, Jean-Paul Van Avermaet, CEO of bpost group said: “With an operating result almost doubled from last year, I can proudly announce excellent results for the third quarter of bpost group. This is primarily due to our very committed employees worldwide, who have contributed in a fantastic way to this and continue to give the best of themselves for our customers worldwide today in very difficult circumstances. In this context of continued positive results, we can increase our adjusted EBIT guidance for the group for the year 2020 to at least EUR 270 million.

The world is changing at an astonishing pace, with COVID-19 leading more people to turn to e-commerce. This has contributed to the strong performance in our European and North American Parcels and Logistics divisions. The EBIT of Parcels & Logistics Europe and Asia has almost tripled, while the EBIT of North America is positive for the second consecutive quarter, resulting in a higher combined contribution of these business units to the EBIT of the group than Mail & Retail. This shows that with our business transformation we are on the right track to build a sustainable future for the company ”.

“With the announcement of a new fulfillment site in the US, 2 additional parcel sorters installed in the summer and now fully operational in Belgium, as well as plans to expand Active Ants to our home country in the course of 2021, we continue to invest in additional capacity. While the second wave of the pandemic continues to create unknown territory with new lockdown measures, we at bpost group are fully ready for the end-of-year peak to successfully meet our customers’ expectations during the most important season of the year. the health of our employees and customers always comes first ”.

“Earlier this year, I worked with the executive management team on the future strategic direction of bpost group. We are pleased to present the outcome of this exercise on December 8, 2020”.

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