International parcels business drives growth at Royal Mail

Parcels revenue rose four per cent in Royal Mail’s main UK business, UKPIL, last year – but this was offset by a four per cent fall in letters revenue.

Total UKPIL revenue was flat at £7.6 billion, while adjusted operating profit was down eight per cent at £503 million.

The international business, GLS increased revenue by ten per cent to £2.6 billion and adjusted operating profit was up 16 per cent to £191 million.

Chief executive Moya Greene said: “GLS had another strong year. Its revenue grew organically and through targeted acquisitions in higher growth markets. Parcel volume growth in UKPIL was our best for four years. We delivered a resilient letters performance. We continue to focus on cost avoidance and parcel revenue growth in the UK and through GLS.”

Last month, Royal Mail revealed that GLS chief Rico Back will take over as group chief executive when Moya Green retires on 1st June.

UKPIL parcel volumes up five per cent, while addressed letter volumes declined by five per cent, in line with expectations.

The group expects addressed letter volumes to decline by four to six per cent a year over the medium term. UK parcel volume and revenue in the coming year is expected to be at least the same as this past year. It aims to avoid some £230m costs in UKPIL with productivity improvements expected to be the upper end of targeted two to three per cent range.

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