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Swiss Post and the French La Poste plan to combine their international cross-border mail activities

The French La Poste and Swiss Post, two of Europe’s principal postal operators, have announced their intention to combine their respective cross-border mail activities in order to further enhance and develop their international mail business. The alliance could be operational in the course of 2012 in the form of a joint venture company to be owned equally by La Poste and Swiss Post, and which would be positioned among the key players in this sector. The Boards of Directors of the two companies have approved the joint venture, subject to all required regulatory approvals being granted.

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International mail is a dynamic market with global revenues for 2010 estimated at more than CHF 12 billion. In recent years, in order to fully enhance and develop their activities in this sector, La Poste (La Poste Global Mail) and Swiss Post (Swiss Post International) have each built a solid international presence with subsidiaries and cooperative ventures in key international mail markets including the USA, the UK, continental Europe and Asia.

The two operators are complementary, both geographically and with regard to their products. They also share the ambition of offering global solutions to businesses that wish to develop in the international market.

In uniting their expertise and cross-border mail networks, La Poste and Swiss Post will be able to better accompany their clients internationally, thus strengthening their commercial prospects and the value of their international investments. The new company will be able to attract new clients by offering high-quality solutions to meet the growing needs of its customer base.

The new joint venture company will combine the strengths and values of La Poste and Swiss Post and will be headquartered in Paris and Bern. The new company will combine all cross-border mail activities of La Poste and Swiss Post, except for inbound and outbound cross-border mail business in France and Switzerland. The regulated universal service obligation of La Poste in France and Swiss Post in Switzerland will not be included in the joint activities. The joint venture is subject to all required regulatory approvals being granted.


“La Poste and Swiss Post confirm their intention of becoming a leader in the international mail market in order to accompany their clients and partners in their development around the world”, says Jean-Paul Bailly, President of the La Poste Group.

“Both partners are complementary from both a geographic and a market-offering point of view. The new company will thus provide the best available value-added mailing solutions for their international clients,” emphasises Jürg Bucher, CEO of Swiss Post.

Stronger focus on core markets

In order to remain competitive, Swiss Post is aligning its activities more consistently towards its four core markets. The Board of Directors has therefore decided to divide up the activities of the Swiss Post International (SPI) Group unit. Until now, SPI has been active in two markets, offering services in the cross-border and international mail and parcels business (communication and logistics). The courier, express and parcels business will be allocated to PostLogistics as of 1 January 2012. The remaining parts of SPI, including the letter mail business, will initially be allocated – in terms of organisation – to the PostMail unit. Operational management of the SPU units will remain the responsibility of former manager Jean-Pierre Streich until 30 June 2012. The establishment of new synergies may result in job cuts in the medium term. Swiss Post is committed, as always, to its social responsibility as an employer, and will do everything it can to avoid redundancies. This realignment of SPI will not impact its customers.

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Groupe La Poste is a multinational group with four principal operating activities: mail, express parcel service, banking, and the La Poste retail brand. In 2010, Groupe La Poste generated revenue of EUR 20.9 billion and employed more than 276,000 staff. Each year, La Poste’s 17,000 branches are visited by some 45 million individuals and 3.5 million business customers. La Poste sorts and delivers over 27 billion items annually. True to its values and public service mission, and backed by the commitment of its postal workers, Groupe La Poste aspires by 2015 to become a European leader in local postal and financial services.


Created in 1995, La Poste Global Mail (International Mail Division of La Poste) is a leading cross-border mail operator, with an annual turnover exceeding EUR 700 million. La Poste Global Mail is established in the major outbound-mail markets with subsidiaries in France, the USA, the UK and Germany, and with sales forces covering around 20 countries. Serving 170 countries through direct routes and with over 800 employees in France and abroad, La Poste Global Mail aims to be the partner of choice for French and international customers for cross-border mail, small-goods delivery and customer relationship management.


Swiss Post is a public company, owned by the Swiss Confederation. The Swiss Post Group has 61,500 employees, with 7,700 staff members based outside Switzerland. In 2010, the Group’s operating income totalled CHF 8.7 billion and the operating result was CHF 930 million. Around 14% of operating income was generated abroad. In its domestic business, Swiss Post transports 2.4 billion addressed letters, 1.3 billion unaddressed items, 1.4 billion newspapers and over 100 million parcels each year and is a major player in Swiss retail banking.


Swiss Post International Holding Ltd. was established in 1996 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Swiss Post, and has 1,250 employees in the USA, twelve European countries and four major Asian cities. Its operating income amounted to CHF 788 million in 2010, with an operating result of CHF 49 million. Swiss Post International offers a range of specialised cross-border postal products and industry-specific solutions for its international business customers as well as private individuals and business customers in Switzerland.


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