March 6 - Swiss global forwarder Panalpina presented disappointing full-year results for 2012.
Revenue for 2012 grew 1.8 percent year-on-year to CHF6.61 billion (USD6.69 billion). Gross profit fell 0.8 percent year-on-year to CHF1.47 billion (USD1.55 billion).
However, despite a relatively solid performance, Panalpina Group reported a loss of CHF70.2 million (USD74.25 million) in 2012 - compared to at CHF127.4 million (USD134.8 million) consolidated profit during 2011.
The company blamed the loss on its exposure to air freight and European trade lanes, as well as on higher costs and various non-recurring charges.
Gross profit from Panalpina's air freight operations fell by 9 percent to CHF627 million (USD663.2 million).
Personnel expenditure grew by four percent year-on-year in 2012 to CHF930 million (USD983.7 million). Its increased operating expenditure (before non-recurring-items) grew by 11 percent to CHF 414 million (USD437.9 million), which the company attributed to investment in warehousing and distribution facilities and increased IT costs.
Extraordinary provisions totaled CHF113.2 million (USD119.7 million) - Panalpina had to pay EU and Swiss anti-trust fines amounting to CHF59.2 million (USD62.6 million), accrued salaries of leaving employees amounted to CHF25.4 million (USD26.9 million), and a goodwill write-off relating to Grieg Logistics of CHF29.6 million (USD31.3 million).
"Our 2012 results are unsatisfactory," said ceo Monika Ribar. "We did not manage to compensate for the setback in air freight. In ocean freight and logistics we considerably expanded our business despite a slowing market growth, but it was simply not sufficient. On the cost side we did not react fast enough."