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Deutsche Post DHL posts Q2 gains, affirms elevated guidance

Operating profit doubled year-over-year, led by Express, Supply Chain units

Big Yellow in the green in Q2 (Photo: Jim Allen/FreightWaves)

German transport and logistics giant Deutsche Post DHL on Thursday reported a 22% second-quarter gain in revenue, and confirmed its medium-term earnings guidance that had been raised last month.

The gains were fueled by the company’s DHL Express unit, which reported a 30% gain in year-over-year revenue, and a rebound in its DHL Supply Chain business, which had struggled before the COVID-19 pandemic and then got hit again once the crisis enveloped the global shipping environment.

The company (OTCUS: DPSGY) posted revenue of $23.1 billion, a sharp gain from the $18.9 billion revenue number in the 2020 quarter when several of its units were hit hard by business closures during the early months of the pandemic. Operating profit, measured in earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT), more than doubled to nearly $2.5 billion. EBIT margins nearly doubled to 10.7%.

The company said it is on track to report record full-year operating earnings of more than $8.3 billion. By 2023, it expects to post operating income of more than $8.7 billion.

Earnings per share in the 2021 quarter more than doubled to $1.24, the company said.

The DHL Express division, which has performed well through the pandemic due to strong demand for international time-definite air express services, posted a 31.8% revenue gain to $7.1 billion. EBIT more than doubled to $1.14 billion. Shipment volumes rose 20.2%, with activity strong across all regions, Deutsche Post DHL said.

The company’s supply chain unit posted a near sixfold rise in EBIT to $234 million, as the unit benefited from easy comparisons and higher demand for its contract logistics services. Revenue rose 21.3% to $3.9 billion. EBIT margins hit a record 6%, quintupling prior-year margin levels, Deutsche Post DHL said. 

The global forwarding unit reported a 64.2% year-on-year EBIT increase to $369.3 million, with revenue rising by more than $1 billion to $6.1 billion. Airfreight and ocean freight volumes rose by 35.7% and 20.5%, respectively, over 2020 levels severely affected by the pandemic. EBIT margins rose to 6% from 4.6% as the unit offset higher freight rates with productivity gains from digitization projects, the parent said.

Shares of Deutsche Post DHL rose slightly to $68.58 in midday trading in New York. Shares are up 61% over the past 12 months.

Mark Solomon

Formerly the Executive Editor at DC Velocity, Mark Solomon joined FreightWaves as Managing Editor of Freight Markets. Solomon began his journalistic career in 1982 at Traffic World magazine, ran his own public relations firm (Media Based Solutions) from 1994 to 2008, and has been at DC Velocity since then. Over the course of his career, Solomon has covered nearly the whole gamut of the transportation and logistics industry, including trucking, railroads, maritime, 3PLs, and regulatory issues. Solomon witnessed and narrated the rise of Amazon and XPO Logistics and the shift of the U.S. Postal Service from a mail-focused service to parcel, as well as the exponential, e-commerce-driven growth of warehouse square footage and omnichannel fulfillment.