Strong growth in e-commerce continues

The Hague

Full press release


Financial highlights Q3 2017

  • Revenue at €809 million (Q3 2016: €770 million)
  • Revenue contribution from e-commerce related activities increased to 37% YTD (2016 YTD: 33%)
  • Underlying cash operating income increased to €31 million (Q3 2016: €27 million)
  • Normalised profit for the period at €19 million (Q3 2016: €20 million)
  • Normalised net cash from operating and investing activities at €(18) million (Q3 2016: €(62) million)
  • Consolidated equity position unchanged at €(17) million

Operational highlights Q3 2017

  • Addressed mail volume declined by 10.2%
  • Delivery quality remained high at 96.5%
  • €16 million cost savings realised
  • Parcels volumes increased by 23%

Outlook 2017 and Ambition 2020

  • Reconfirm full year underlying cash operating income towards lower end of previously communicated guidance range of between €220 million and €260 million
  • Ambition for underlying cash operating income in 2020 unchanged at between €310 million and €380 million
  • Expectations and ambition are subject to final implementation of SMP decision
  • Objective remains to deliver a progressive dividend; monitoring capital markets for refinancing opportunities of up to €400 million, in line with financial strategy

CEO statement

Herna Verhagen, CEO of PostNL: “Our Q3 performance was ahead of last year as a result of a strong performance in Parcels and some positive incidentals that supported Mail in the Netherlands in particular. This translates into 37% contribution of e-commerce revenues for the first nine months of 2017, proving once more that we are well on track with the acceleration of our transformation to be the postal & logistic solutions provider in the Benelux.

In Parcels, the strong volume growth of 23% reflects our solid position in the Benelux e‑commerce logistics market. Revenue improved by almost the same percentage (21%), also helped by growing international volumes and the recent acquisitions in logistics services. Progress in Belgium is gaining momentum, which is reflected in volume growth over 30% in the first nine months of this year. Overall, business performance and operational efficiency were strong.

Performance in International did not show the anticipated improvement and this continues to remain a focus for management attention.

We faced strong volume decline in Mail in the Netherlands, partly resulting from the intensifying competition from consolidators, supported by the earlier ACM measures. Apart from the impact from regulation, we were able to absorb part of the negative volume/price/mix effect and other business effects through further cost savings. Helped by positive incidentals, including higher proceeds from the sale of buildings, the result exceeded last year’s performance.

The Dutch postal market has changed fundamentally and volumes are expected to decline further. Regulation must be amended to reflect this reality and to facilitate an orderly and rational adjustment of the postal market structure. To safeguard the reliability and accessibility of the postal service and to preserve decent labour conditions in such a shrinking market, over the long run, we are of the view that consolidation is inevitable. I therefore repeat our call to politicians.

Our outlook for 2017 remains unchanged. We remain on track to report full year underlying cash operating income towards the lower end of our previously stated outlook range of between €220 million and €260 million, given the faster than anticipated development of the impact of earlier ACM measures and the developments in International. Supported by the progress we are making in implementing‎ our strategy our objective remains to pay a progressive dividend.”