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2017 has “great political uncertainties” says Panalpina

BASEL: March 02, 2017. Panalpina has reported a consolidated profit of CHF80.2 million on net revenue of CHF5.19 billion for 2016, a reduction from CHF88.2 million and CHF5.85 billion respectively for the previous year.

Panalpina cargoluxPanalpina CEO Stefan Karlen described 2016 as "a very challenging year" due to lower volumes from the oil and gas sector leading to a restructuring of its business. This was then followed by the collapse of Hanjin Shipping and a "very busy" airfreight season: "While we continued to perform well on volumes, pressure on yields impacted our profits," he said.

The company moved 921,400 tons of airfreight last year – an increase of 10 percent and its highest volume since 2007. Despite a year-on-year reduction in gross profit per ton of 7.5 percent, overall 2016 gross profit totaled CHF595.2 million and the adjusted EBIT rose from CHF80.8 million to CHF93.5 million.

Ocean volumes fell 7.0 percent year-on-year to 1.48 million TEUs in 2016. The company said margin pressure rose in Q4 following the Hanjin bankruptcy in August and the resultant gross profit for 2016 fell to CHF443.8 million from CHF480.4 million the previous year. The adjusted EBIT was CHF10.9 million, a decline from CHF26.6 million in 2015.

Panalpina's logistics division saw its gross profit fall 5.8 percent year-on-year to CHF385.7 million while the adjusted EBIT improved from CHF2.1 million in 2015 to CHF 5.6 million during the period.

Commenting on the outlook for 2017, "a year of great political and macroeconomic uncertainties," Karlen said Panalpina would concentrate on trying to improve yields, particularly in its ocean forwarding business. "Yields have continued to remain under pressure in January and February and we expect the first quarter to come in below the previous year," he added.

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