PostNL to increase package delivery fees
PostNL warned that it must increase parcel delivery rates due to inflation, which has left the postal and parcel company struggling with high fuel costs, among other things. The company is also noticing a decrease in packages sent lately.
CEO Herna Verhagen said that PostNL is currently taking extra measures to control costs. But it is also clear that the higher prices cannot only be compensated for by working more efficiently, she said.
“Price adjustments will also be necessary in the near future,” Verhagen said. “That is not about the mail but the packages.” The price increases will likely only take effect after this year. PostNL is still figuring out how much the rates for sending parcels will increase.
Verhagen pointed out that inflation is also pressuring consumer spending. According to her, this is visible in the development of package volumes and would lead to unpredictability. PostNL’s market share should remain stable, but the company is slightly lowering its expectations for operating profit for the whole of this year. Last quarter, the company’s total revenue fell by 11 percent to 746 million euros. The profit fell to 5 million euros, from 56 million euros in the same period last year.
From April to June, PostNL had almost 13 percent fewer parcels to transport than a year ago. The company stressed that the coronavirus effect played a significant role in that decline. During the pandemic, online shopping took off, and many more packages were sent. Many people now return to the shopping streets when they want to shop. Verhagen is nevertheless confident that the trend towards more and more online orders will continue and that the number of parcels for PostNL will rise again after this year.
PostNL also delivered over 7 percent less mail last quarter. That was still slightly more than expected, according to the company.
PostNL has been struggling with staff shortages, with between 1,300 and 1,500 unfilled vacancies for postal workers. To make the position more attractive, PostNL now offers all postal deliverers a permanent contract. According to Verhagen, this recent announcement has resulted in about ten times as many applications as usual.
Reporting by ANP