bpost: The 3rd quarter is softer, as fully expected, and in line with industry

bpost: The 3rd quarter is softer, as fully expected, and in line with industry

bpost  has delivered its third quarter results which, as anticipated revealed lower 3Q21 vs LY, from return of pre-COVID seasonal pattern, low-value consignment relief impacts and expected costs.

Third quarter 2021 highlights

  • Group operating income at EUR 977.6m, +0.5% compared with the same period last year.
  • Group adjusted EBIT at EUR 39.1m (margin of 4.0%) decreased by EUR 30.4m compared to prior year but in line with pre-COVID seasonal pattern in which the third quarter is always the weakest. Group reported EBIT at EUR 31.0m.
  • Mail & Retail
    • Total operating income at EUR 469.4m (+1.2%) driven by positive mail price impact offsetting volume decline.
    • Underlying mail volume decline of -7.5% with one-off COVID-19 communication fading-out.
    • Adjusted EBIT at EUR 20.2m (4.3% margin) down by EUR -15.5m (-43.3%) driven by fleet and energy costs, salary index and CLA impacts and capacity kept in the network for parcel volume growth in post-COVID new normal. Reported EBIT at EUR 13.5m.
  • Parcels & Logistics Europe & Asia
    • Total operating income at EUR 238.2m (-9.5%) fully driven by the anticipated but higher than expected decline in Asian cross-border volumes versus peak of the third quarter 2020 and from impacts of low-value consignment relief abolished as of July 2021.
    • Parcels B2X volume increased by +8.9% from sustained online sales, and negative price/mix of -5.8%.
    • Continued e-commerce logistics expansion of Radial Europe and Active Ants (+13.3%).
    • Adjusted EBIT at EUR 12.0m (5% margin), down by EUR -17.7m (-59.6%) driven by cross-border development and OPEX for e-commerce logistics expansion. Reported EBIT at EUR 11.3m.
  • Parcels & Logistics North America
    • Total operating income excluding International mail at EUR 313.2m (+14.9% at constant exchange rate), reflecting accelerated contribution of Radial’s new customers.
    • Radial’s top-line development offset by wage pressure in the US and costs from new sites.
    • EUR +4.0m EBIT impact from insurance recovery from the ransomware attack in October 2020.
    • Adjusted EBIT at EUR 12.8m (4.0% margin), up by EUR +4.0m or flat operationally, with reported EBIT at EUR 12.1m.
  • 2021 guidance reiterated, group adjusted EBIT expected to be above EUR 340m.

Dirk Tirez, CEO of bpost group commented: “The 3rd quarter is softer as fully expected and in line with industry. We have set solid fundamentals that maintain our confidence in the end of year peak and the delivery of our upgraded full year guidance, which is an EBIT of “above EUR 340m”. I would like to thank all my colleagues for their focus on the end of year peak and on the management priorities aiming to accelerate the transformation journey of bpost. We are rebuilding the team at the top and have set clear priorities to build a long term sustainable future for bpost. It is also my pleasure to announce that bpost has increased its environmental ambitions, aiming to reduce our emissions under direct influence with 55% by 2030 when comparing to 2019. As bpost, we are focused on economic, ecologic and social sustainability. Today’s announcement represents significant progress to that end.”

Strengthening the leadership executive team at bpost

bpost has also announced some key appointments:

  • Mr. Jean Muls has been appointed in the new function CEO Belgium that has been created to strengthen the leadership position of bpost in Belgium and accelerate the transformation.
  • Mr. Nicolas Baise has been appointed as Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer to coordinate the group strategy and lead transformation projects in an agile way.

They will both join bpost at the latest in January 2022.

  • The process for the recruitment of the group CFO and of the Chief Technology Officer is ongoing.

The group CFO position has been redefined with an increased focus on group profitability and performance, and cost control, while the role of the Chief Technology Officer has been redefined with a focus on innovation, increasing customer experience through technology, and support of the growth in e-commerce logistics technology.

A succession plan is being established for all other functions in the group executive committee.

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