Disclosed inside information pursuant to article 17 Market Abuse Regulation
(MAR) transmitted by euro adhoc with the aim of a Europe-wide distribution.
The issuer is responsible for the content of this announcement.
Quarterly Report/Company Information
Vienna, 29 October 2019 -
Austrian Post predicts revenue increase in 2019 as well as in 2020\nEarnings (EBIT) outlook: Stability in operating earnings in 2019 (before provisions for data protection) and also stability in operating earnings in 2020 (before start-up costs for new financial services)\n2019: good operating mail and parcel business featuring positive effects from one-off mailings and outstanding parcel growth supported by cooperation with Deutsche Post DHL Group\nPositive decision of European Central Bank (ECB) approving Austrian Post's acquisition of an 80% stake in Brüll Kallmus Bank\nNegative effect due to administrative penalty imposed by the Austrian Data Protection Authority\n2020 with three priorities: ensuring capacities and quality against the backdrop of parcel growth, further upgrading of the product portfolio and development of new financial services\nAhead of publication of the Interim Report Q1-3 of Austrian Post on 14 November
2019, the overall picture of the business development in the years 2019 and 2020
can be presented as follows:
FORECAST FOR 2019: INCREASED REVENUE AND STABLE OPERATING EARNINGS
As was already evident in the half-year revenue development, Austrian Post
expects an overall increase in the entire 2019 financial year. Despite the
declining mail volumes, positive one-off effects from elections and special
mailings but above all from the growing parcel business are driving the positive
The partnership with Deutsche Post DHL Group to delivery parcels in Austria is
off to a very good start. Since 1 August 2019, DHL parcels destined for Austria
have been delivered by Austrian Post. Total monthly transport and delivery
volumes are now about 25% higher than in the previous year. Against the backdrop
of this parcel volume development, the capacity expansion investment programme
is accorded the highest priority. As previously communicated, growth investments
in excess of EUR 50m are planned in 2019 in addition to maintenance investments
totalling about EUR 70m. Moreover, investments in the range of EUR 25m are
expected to expand existing properties or acquire new land, as well as EUR 15m
to purchase sorting technology in connection with the cooperation with Deutsche
Post DHL Group.
On balance, Austrian Post targets stable operating earnings (EBIT) in 2019 based
on the good development in the core business including various start-up costs to
develop its financial services business. This does not include provisions
totalling EUR 18m for an administrative fine imposed on Austrian Post by the
Austrian Data Protection Authority on grounds of the alleged illegal use of
marketing data. The penalty decision is not legally binding, and Austrian Post
intends to exercise its right to file an appeal in a court of first instance.
MILESTONES IN 2020 TO SAFEGUARD LONG-TERM STABILITY
Stability is not only the company's underlying objective for 2019 but for 2020
as well. This refers to stability in the high quality and quick delivery of
fast-growing parcel volumes and in securing universal postal services in Austria
alongside stability in the service offering of the branch network.
Parcel growth requires a boost in investment activity
High-quality, quick parcel delivery necessitates the rapid expansion of the
company's infrastructure of sorting and logistics centres. Austrian Post is
intensifying its planned Austrian parcel logistics investment programme in
parcel distribution centres against the backdrop of the current volume growth of
about 25%. This is the guarantee for success enabling Austrian Post to ensure
the qualitatively best network in Austria. Capacities were already significantly
increased when the parcel centre in Hagenbrunn in the north of Vienna became
fully operational in September 2019. The next milestones will be the completion
of the parcel centre in Kalsdorf near Graz and the logistics centre in Thalgau/
Salzburg in the middle of next year. Accordingly, total CAPEX in the 2020
financial year is also expected to match the investments made in 2019.
Further development of the product portfolio
Enhanced service options based on the expansion of the letter mail product
portfolio have been well received. The new offering features the ECO Letter for
not time-critical mail items with a delivery time of two to three days and the
PRIO Letter for fast items requiring next-day delivery. At present more than 60%
of all letters are delivered on the basis of the not time-critical ECO service.
In line with international developments, the challenge is to continuously create
innovative solutions and implement product adjustments to counteract the approx.
5% annual decrease in mail volumes accompanied by rising factor costs. The aim
is to develop new customer solutions while moderately raising postage rates to
compensate for inflation. Austrian Post is working on innovations in the product
portfolio for example the easier access to ECO mail as well as simplifications
in the shipment of valuables and dangerous goods. In this way, Austrian Post
will continue to ensure that outstanding service can be offered in Austria at
favourable rates, especially in an international comparison.
Other innovative solutions will also be developed in the field of private
customer parcels. The technical basis for further developing the pick-up service
and AllesPost will be launched in 2020. In the future, the pick-up service can
also be managed via an App and the functions of AllesPost will be further
enhanced. Self-service solutions which have already been installed are being put
to very good use and will be significantly expanded. The 10,000 new handhelds
for the mail and parcel delivery staff enable further services.
New financial services offering as of Q2 2020
Important milestones were achieved enabling Austrian Post to offer a focused
financial services business within the Austrian Post branch network starting in
the second quarter of 2020.
Following the positive decision of the ECB within the context of ownership
control procedures, Austrian Post acquired an 80% shareholding in Brüll Kallmus
Bank AG (former sole shareholder: GRAWE Banking Group). After the closing of the
transaction, Austrian Post will now contribute about EUR 55m within the context
of a capital increase.
As a result, new financial services will be offered as of the second quarter of
2020. The aim is to be present on the marketplace both on an online basis and
also through physical outlets. The Austrian Post network featuring some 1,800
postal service points consisting of company-operated branch offices and postal
partners represents an outstanding basis for this. The business model will be
focused and risk-adverse, emphasizing current account and payment transaction
services. Additional financial services and insurance products should be offered
via business partners and round off the product portfolio.
STABILITY TARGETED FOR 2020
Stable or slightly higher revenue should serve as the basis for achieving a
general stability in operating earnings (EBIT) of the core business. However,
start-up costs in total of about EUR 40m in the years 2020 and 2021 are expected
within the context of building up a new offering of financial services. Austrian
Post expects positive earnings contributions from its financial services
business starting in 2023.
The high level of financial resources on the balance sheet makes it possible for
Austrian Post to finance its targeted growth investments in the logistics
infrastructure and new financial services on its own. Accordingly, the generated
operating cash flow will continue to be used for investments in the operating
business and maintaining Austrian Post's attractive dividend policy.
end of announcement euro adhoc
issuer: Österreichische Post AG
phone: +43 (0)57767-0
Digital press kit: http://www.ots.at/pressemappe/2209/aom
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