Belgian bpostgroup has seen operating profits fall by 8.3% y-o-y to €555.1m, on a slight revenue growth of 1.5% to €4.4bn in 2022.
Among the shoots of growth was E-Logistics North America that saw a 13.8% growth in total operating profits to €1.65bn. Domestically however, there were large drops in mail and parcel volumes across the board. Domestic mail volumes fell by 6.8%, Transactional Mail -6.5%, and Parcels B2X saw a 7.5% drop in volumes compared to 2021.
Parcel volumes rebalancing after a 10.1% growth in 2021 was aligned with many other parcel operators’ experiences in the last 12 months. However, where Advertising Mail fell by 0.9% in 2021, this fall in volumes accelerated sharply to a 6.9% drop in volumes y-o-y to December 2022.
A number of factors were in play in the overall drop in operating profit. Internally, CEO Dirk Tirez was forced to step aside temporarily pending an internal investigation into tendering for newspaper deliveries in October. Then CFO Philippe Dartienne was made CEO ad interim while the ongoing investigation takes place. The macroeconomic factors affecting the EU’s economy were at play, with the war in Ukraine ultimately affecting consumer confidence on top of the general move back to high street shopping in favour of e-commerce.
Speaking of the turbulent year for bpostgroup, Philippe Dartienne, CEO ad interim said, “For the year, despite persisting macro headwinds, bpostgroup managed to absorb the downside risk pressures to the initial EBIT guidance of 280-310 mEUR. This is a great achievement and I want to thank all our employees for their relentless efforts and the implementation of the actions taken by the Management to counter the market disruptions we have faced throughout the year.”