New challenges see top management changes at PostNord

Annemarie Gardshol

Top management changes at PostNord, the north European mail and parcels operator, have seen the chief executive and chief financial officer step down.

The PostNord board has appointed Annemarie Gardshol as acting group chief executive, saying that it is time for new leadership “due to the new phase of challenges”.

Håkan Ericsson is stepping down as chief executive at PostNord, which is owned by the governments of Sweden and Denmark.

PostNord will also get a new acting chief financial office (CFO), Lena Larsson, who is currently head of group business control. She replaces Gunilla Berg, who will also leave the organisation.

A statement from the board of directors at the Nordic logistics business said: “PostNord needs to continue its high pace of change in order to meet the global changes in our core business of the letter and parcel markets.

“Due to the new phase of challenges faced by PostNord, it is time for new leadership.”

It added that the recruitment of a new group chief executive will “begin immediately”.

In 2018, PostNord delivered 3.3bn letters and shipments and 171m parcels to the Nordic region’s 27m residents and 2m businesses. 

The statement said that the letter and parcel markets “are undergoing major changes” and that PostNord “needs to flexibly and efficiently continue to realign itself as a result of reduced letter volumes and a growing parcel market, while still ensuring high levels of quality and service”.

PostNord chairman Christian Jansson said: “As a consequence of accelerating market changes, the pace of PostNord’s transition work needs to increase further.

“At the same time, there must be an increased focus on the core business in each country, which is crucial for meeting customer needs and enabling long-term profitability.”

Jannson added: “Håkan Ericsson has had a crucial role in PostNord’s major transition work. With his excellent leadership skills, Håkan Ericsson has implemented significant investments in the company’s growing parcel business and at the same time realized demanding cost reductions.” 

Ericsson said: “I am proud to have managed the extensive transformation work, together with all of PostNord’s employees, over the past five years.

“The basis for the next phase of this work is in place, and it is now the right time to hand over to new leadership.”

The current head of the Swedish operations, Gardshol, will take over her new acting post from today. She will also remain in her current role as chief executive of PostNord Sweden.

Said a spokesperson: “With her background within PostNord, she is well versed in the core business and the challenges faced by the company.

Said Gardshol: “Together with the Board of Directors, the new management will quickly draw up a plan to implement the necessary changes.

“Our ambition is to continue to strengthen our leading position in the Nordic region.”

Jansson said of the outgoing CFO: “Gunilla Berg has made an important contribution to PostNord in a critical period for the company, and the company wants to thank her for fantastic efforts.”

The Board of Directors is now launching a broad recruitment process, with the goal of having a new permanent group chief executive and CFO in place “by no later than the end of the year.”

PostNord is a Swedish public limited company with headquarters in Solna, Sweden. PostNord is owned 40% by the Danish State and 60% by the Swedish State. Voting rights are shared 50/50 between the owners. 

Hakan Ericsson

Gunilla Berg

 

 

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