Swiss logistics company Panalpina said it more than doubled its adjusted EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) in 2013, driven by strong growth in logistics, ocean freight, and oil and gas and projects business.
The group reported an EBIT for last year of CHF48 million (US$54.5 million)—or CHF108 million when adjusted for non-recurring items, which is more than double the 2012 adjusted EBIT of CHF49.3 million.
The adjusted EBIT-to-gross profit margin increased to 6.9 percent, up from 3.4 percent in 2012.
“We recovered from 2012 and gained market share in a low growth environment in 2013,” said group CEO Peter Ulber, who has been at the helm of the company since June. “I am happy to state that we outperformed the market in both air and ocean freight. But there is still a lot of room for profitability improvements, especially in logistics and ocean freight.”
Net forwarding revenue last year increased 2 percent to CHF6.75 billion from 2012’s CHF6.61 billion. Group gross profit increased 7 percent to CHF1.56 billion from CHF1.46 billion the previous year.
In a market that only expanded by about 1 percent in 2013, Panalpina said its airfreight volumes grew 3 percent for an adjusted EBIT of CHF119.3 million against CHF79.8 million the preceding year.
Ocean freight volumes grew 8 percent year-on-year, while the market grew an estimated 3 percent. The division posted an adjusted EBIT of CHF28 million in 2013 compared to CHF8.9 million in 2012.
The logistics product saw an EBIT loss of CHF39.3 million versus a 2012 loss of CHF39.4 million, caused primarily by a number of loss-making facilities and unprofitable road activities.
“In 2014 we will focus on stabilizing our performance in airfreight and improving productivity and operating margin in ocean freight,” said Ulber.
In logistics, the company’s top priority is to turn around loss-making facilities. It will also exit from overland capacity commitments while still developing value-added services. “We see logistics as an important differentiator to complement our end-to-end offering,” added Ulber.
Panalpina expects the airfreight market to grow by 2 percent to 3 percent and the ocean freight market by 4 percent to 5 percent in 2014, and aims to outperform the market in all segments.