Operating profit at Deutsche Post DHL’s supply chain division rose 56.7 per cent to 362m euros last year on sales up 1.2 per cent to 13.22bn euros.
The Express division also performed strongly, according to the group’s annual results, with operating profit (EBIT) rising 86.5 per cent to 927m euros on sales up 22 per cent.
The group said the sales figure for the supply chain business were affected by the divestment of a US subsidiary. Adjusting for that and exchange rate effects, sales were up six per cent.
Growth was particularly strong in the Asia-Pacific region as well as in the life sciences & healthcare and automotive sectors.
Additional contracts worth 1.3bn euros were concluded last year, an increase of around 200m euros on the previous year.
In the express business, DHL has been withdrawing from a number of domestic operations including China, Canada and Australia. It sold the UK domestic parcels business to Home Delivery Network in 2010.
It said growth in express last year was driven by a double digit volume rise in international shipments. Asia Pacific was again the growth engine.
Operating profit (EBIT) in the forwarding division was up 12 per cent to 429m euros while sales rose 4.9 per cent to 15bn euros. The group said that even though air and ocean freight revenues came under pressure in the second half of the year as market growth slowed considerably, all business units contributed to the overall increase.
“The overland transport business performed particularly well, producing revenue growth of nearly 10 percent. Even though fuel prices remained high, the division profited from lower freight rates, improved purchasing conditions and the focus on selective growth in attractive business areas.”
However, profits fell 1.2 per cent in the mail business despite a small rise in sales. Deutsche Post’s strategy is increasingly to focus on parcels – particularly internet generated traffic.
Sales in this segment rose nine per cent to 3.2 bn euros – some 25 per cent of the Mail division’s revenue.
For the group as a whole EBIT was up 32.8 per cent to 2.4bn euros on sales up 2.8 per cent to 52.8bn euros.
Group chief executive Frank Appel said: “We hit all of our targets, made very good progress with the implementation of our Strategy 2015 and further bolstered the already very strong platform for a sustainable expansion of our earnings in the future.”