Panalpina expects stagnant year

FREIGHT forwarder Panalpina has lowered its airfreight market growth expectations for 2011 to zero per cent.

The group’s third-quarter results show airfreight volume expanse was still affected by the profitability restoration programme initiated in 2010, where unprofitable business was discontinued. Cargo volumes were down by six per cent year-on-year (-3 per cent in the first nine months). Quarter-on-quarter the gap to the market narrowed from eight per cent to less than three per cent.

Yield focus led to a further rise in gross profit per metric tonne, up three per cent year-on-year (+23 per cent currency adjusted). Yield management also resulted in a rise of the group’s gross profit margin year-on-year for the third quarter (22.7 per cent compared to 20.4 per cent).

Overall Panalpina reported strong results for the third quarter of 2011. Currency adjusted, gross profit increased by 11 per cent year-on-year, supported by organic growth across all regions and segments. The strength of the Swiss franc continued to have a significant adverse effect on the financial results of the Group.

“We did very well, despite fierce competition and a challenging environment. Our focus on sustainable, profitable growth is clearly starting to pay off,” said chief executive officer Monika Ribar (pictured). “We’ve made good progress in volumes while gross profit remained high. In airfreight we narrowed the gap considerably.”

Panalpina has confirmed its financial targets for 2014. “We are on the right track with profitability and volumes and we expect the organisation’s hard work that was put into the new business pipeline to bear fruit. Still, given the volatility of the markets, we rest vigilant,” said Ribar.

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