Australia Post (AusPost) has reported an increase in group revenues of 3% to A$3.6bn (US$2.8bn) for the second half of 2017, supported by strong parcel growth.
Parcel revenues increased by 8% in the period, outperforming retail sales growth. Competitive pressures affected the domestic parcels earnings growth modestly, but the growth did compensate for the 10% fall in addressed letter volumes.
The group delivered strong inward growth from Asia, with inbound parcel volumes up 45% in the period, with almost all of this growth coming from China.
In contrast, addressed letter volumes fell by more than 26% in the last three years as businesses continue to drive their communications online. However, 2017 letter revenues were temporarily boosted by the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey.
Christine Holgate, group CEO and managing director, AusPost, said, “Two-thirds of AusPost revenues are now in competitive markets and although deliveries were strong and cost savings were encouraging, trading earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) was flat at just 1% growth.
“Reported profit after tax of A$217m (US$170m) was up 65%, or A$86m (US$67m), boosted by benefits from property transactions and other one-off items,” added Holgate. “Due to the strong seasonal nature of our business we expect to again make a loss in the second half.
“We do though forecast a full year profit before tax result in line with last year. Going forward it is critically important we focus on returning Australia Post to sustainable growth.”
The business continues to invest in infrastructure and customer experience while maintaining a healthy cash balance of A$480m (US$377m).
February 27, 2018