Business Post revenues fall in first half
Business Post Group plc, the UK parcel and mail delivery group, has provided a pre-close update for the six months to 30 September 2006.
According to management, trading in the first half of the current financial year has been satisfactory with group revenue up 15% to £153m. Progress continues to be made with the performance improvement initiatives previously announced.
Revenues in Parcel Services, (comprising the Group's overnight business-to-business, business-to-consumer, and cross-border parcel delivery activities) were down 3.4% to £94m. Management is focusing on its customer service and improving its operational efficiency. Parcels volumes are now showing growth.
Further progress has been made in improving the performance of its franchise network. Eight franchises have been brought back into corporate ownership in the period, bringing the total transferred since the beginning of the calendar year to 14. Overall these operations made a significant trading loss. The plan is to reduce the run-rate of these losses such that they are eliminated by the start of the new financial year. However, as previously advised, these losses will impact its operating profit by £3m for the current financial year, weighted toward the first half.
UK Mail, a leading competitor to Royal Mail in mail delivery services, continues to deliver strong growth, with revenue up 156% to £37m. It has won a number of significant new contracts, particularly in the financial services industry. Since inception in May 2004 it has processed over one billion mail items and in September alone handled some 85 million mail items.
Overall revenues in Specialist Services, (comprising the Group's nationwide palletised goods delivery service and same-day courier activities) were up 3.5% to £21m.