To: 05/06/2022 15:08
CEO Frank Appel is entering his final year at the helm of Deutsche Post. Shareholders benefit from the growth of the company. But there were also criticisms at the general meeting.
By Jörg Sauerwein, WDR
A year ago, the chairman of the supervisory board, Nikolaus von Bomhard, was still optimistic – shareholders should come to Bonn in person at the next general meeting. A few months ago, however, a different decision was made. And so the post office boss, Frank Appel, had to turn to the cameras rather than the faces.
“We are living in very difficult times because we have not yet left the pandemic behind us and it is still impacting the global economy and many people,” Appel said at the virtual shareholder meeting today. . “We are appalled by the war in Ukraine and strongly condemn it. However, there are also many positive things to report.”
“Record results in all divisions”
Because the Bonn group has a record year behind it – with a significant increase in sales and profits. With the onset of the pandemic, the rise of e-commerce caused the Postal Service to significantly increase the number of packages quarter over quarter. But it’s not just here that business has improved lately. “If you go through the divisions, they all have record results,” said the Post Office boss. “Express made as much profit as the group as a whole in 2019. Global Forwarding and Freight made over a billion for the first time and doubled its profit.”
In the first three months of this year, the freight division was even one of the main drivers for the continued increase in profits. Unlike online commerce, which is slowly normalizing. This is why the number of parcels has even recently fallen slightly compared to the previous year. Nevertheless, the post is sticking to its profit target of around eight billion. The war in Ukraine will not change that. There, in Russia and Belarus, the post does not even make 1% of its sales.
What is the independence of the board of directors?
Appel said in Bonn that the financial impact of the war on Swiss Post had been relatively minor. In a year, he wants to give up his place as leader to Tobias Meyer. At the moment he is still a member of the board of directors of Post and Parcel Germany and from July he will also take care of real estate, purchasing and IT, for example. “Mr Meyer will replace me in these tasks, so that he can also take on the responsibility of group CEO at the next general meeting next year,” the CEO said.
Appel had been criticized beforehand because he had meanwhile been elected chairman of the supervisory board of Deutsche Telekom, but at the same time wanted to remain boss of the Post Office for another year. During the General Meeting, shareholders also criticized the filling of new positions on the Supervisory Board. Some representatives are not independent, hence the accusation. Among other things, Luise Hölscher, who is currently State Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Finance, is to move there. The Supervisory Board of the Post sees it differently, the assessments here differed widely, explained the president of Bomhard.
Dividend increases by 45 cents
For his last year at Swiss Post, CEO Appel has decided to invest even more money – more than four billion this year alone. One of the areas close to his heart is sustainability. “We want to invest seven billion in sustainable fuels for air, sea and road by 2030,” the official said. “We want to electrify 60% of our delivery vehicles, we want all new buildings we build to be CO2 free.”
This journey has begun and you can already see the first successes, Appel explained. On the other hand, shareholders can rejoice in the financial successes of the company. They should benefit from a sharply rising dividend. It should now be 1.80 euros per share, or 45 cents more than last year.
Deutsche Post Annual General Meeting 2022
Dirk Sauerwein, WDR, 6.5.2022 14:11