Swiss Post Q3 interim results: “Challenging market”
At 263 million francs, Group profit at Swiss Post was down year-on-year after the third quarter of 2019. Head of Finance Alex Glanzmann cites “challenging market conditions” as the reason for this.
Mr Glanzmann, after the third quarter of 2019, Swiss Post’s results are lower year-on-year – are you disappointed?
No, this result wasn’t a surprise to us and is in line with our expectations. It reflects developments in a challenging market.
What does that mean in concrete terms?
PostMail and PostFinance, the two units which have in the past made the largest contributions to the financial result, find themselves in a difficult market situation due to a decline in letter mail volumes and the low interest rate situation. Large-scale efforts are required to go some way towards compensating for this trend. We are currently able to achieve this to some extent thanks to the excellent work done in these units, but it is becoming increasingly challenging. PostMail exceeded its operating profit year-on-year, despite shrinking letter mail volumes. The main reason for this success is that it was possible to reduce operating expenses. Swiss Post’s current infrastructure is rapidly approaching its limits due to growing parcel volumes. For this reason, we are investing in parcel centers, which impacts on the result at PostLogistics − furthermore, the results for this year do not include an amount from the sale of a subsidiary, as was the case in the previous year.
How will you tackle these “challenging” market conditions?
We are already taking action. Thanks to intensive efforts in all business areas, results have not declined to the same extent as the deterioration in general conditions. We want to continue to finance the universal service from our own resources in the future. However, this is questionable in the medium term given the difficult operating framework.