Air freight was the bright spot for Panalpina in the first nine months of 2016, with volumes rising by nine per cent despite a one per cent fall in the market.
The company said its recently acquired perishables business accounted for about six per cent volume growth and new business accounted for the remaining three per cent growth. Nevertheless, gross profit per tonne was down five per cent on last year.
Panalpina’s ocean freight volumes fell nine per cent year on year while the market shrank by an estimated one per cent. The company said the decrease was mainly due to significantly lower volumes in oil and gas since the beginning of the year as well as a discontinued high-volume contract. Despite the fall in volumes, gross profit per TEU increased five per cent.
In Logistics adjusted EBIT increased to CHF 5 million (£4.1m) for the first nine months of 2016, compared to CHF 2m (£1.6m) in the same period of last year.
“Despite shrinking air and ocean freight markets and high margin pressure in the first nine months of the year we delivered an improved EBIT and consolidated profit (both adjusted for one-offs). Continued high cost discipline, particularly in the third quarter, made this achievement possible,” said CEO Stefan Karlen.
Group turnover, at CHF 3.9 billion was down on the first nine months of 2015 (CHF 4.4bn, £3.6bn). EBIT (operating profit) was down from CHF 92.4m (£75.9m) to CHF 67.9m (£55.8m).