Parcel flood brings “strongest first quarter of all time”

The strong demand from dealers and customers is driving Deutsche Post’s sales up. The group is raising its forecast for 2021.

Deutsche Post and DHL benefit from online trading and the pandemic.

Dhe Deutsche Post is rushing from record to record due to the rapidly growing parcel business and increasing world trade. “We had the best first quarter ever,” said CEO Frank Appel on Wednesday. After a jump in profits and sales from January to March, the group screwed up its forecast for 2021. Appel also raised the medium-term goals.

“The ongoing boom in e-commerce is driving the volume of shipments in the national and international parcel business,” said Chief Financial Officer Melanie Kreis. In the global freight business, Swiss Post also benefited from the recovery in world trade.

For 2021, the group now expects an operating profit (EBIT) of more than 6.7 billion euros – previously it had promised well over 5.6 billion euros. For 2023, the Bonn-based company is expecting an EBIT of more than seven billion euros, after more than six billion euros had previously been forecast. “The pandemic has accelerated the development of e-commerce by a few years,” said Kreis.

Flood of parcels like at Christmas

The ongoing parcel boom in the Corona crisis kept Deutsche Post on record course at the beginning of the year. In the German parcel business alone, the group delivered 489 million parcels – this corresponds to the quantities in the fourth quarter of 2020 with the important Christmas business. The operating profit (EBIT) climbed in the group from January to March to 1.9 billion euros – after 592 million euros in the same quarter of the previous year. All in all, according to minorities, Swiss Post quadrupled its profit to around 1.2 billion euros (previous year: 301 million euros). Sales rose by 22 percent to 18.86 billion euros.

But it is not just the post office that benefits from the parcel boom. Competitor UPS was even able to increase its sales by 27 percent to around 22.9 billion dollars in the first quarter. The operating result of the US group had shot up in comparison to the same quarter last year by 158 percent to 2.8 billion dollars. The American rival FedEx had also recently posted gains.

The lockdown in the Corona crisis had given online retail a decisive boost. More and more consumers order their goods on the Internet, the logistics groups deliver them. They expect the trend to continue after the pandemic. But world trade is also currently picking up again. That plays into the cards of logisticians worldwide.