Deutsche Post 2007 Annual General Meeting: Dividend increased to 75 Cents05/08/2007, 07:30 AM CEST
- Annual dividend increase of 19 percent on average since IPO
- Group confirms operating targets for 2007
Köln/Bonn, May 8, 2007: Deutsche Post World Net has successfully completed its business year 2006 and swiftly integrated its acquisitions to create an excellent platform for organic growth. "With a global network, profound know-how, qualified management and highly motivated employees, Deutsche Post World Net is today the worldwide market leader in a booming logistics industry,'' Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Klaus Zumwinkel told shareholders at today's Annual General Meeting in Cologne.
Based on these developments, the Board of Management and Supervisory Board are proposing a dividend of 75 cents for 2006, 7.1 percent more than a year earlier. That corresponds to a payout ratio of 47.1 percent. On average, the dividend has increased 19 percent annually since the Deutsche Post IPO. The company plans to further increase its payout ratio and continue its current dividend policy of sharing its excellent business performance with shareholders. The dividend is tax free for domestic shareholders.
Key figures 2006
In the fiscal year 2006 sales rose 35.8 percent to 60.55 billion euros. Operating profit (EBIT) reached 3.87 billion euros after 3.76 billion euros in the previous year. Net income declined 14.3 percent to 1.92 billion euros, mainly because Deutsche Post reduced its stake in Deutsche Postbank to 50 percent plus one share. Earnings per share fell 19.6 percent to 1.60 euros.
Challenges in 2007
According to the current legal framework, the German mail market will be fully opened from Jan. 1, 2008. The business unit MAIL is already well prepared to face intensified competition in its German home market. In addition to further increases in cost flexibility and productivity, the Group intends to reinforce leadership in quality as well as maintain its revenue level in the MAIL business through internationalization, already successfully introduced. At the same time, Deutsche Post World Net asked once again for a harmonized opening of the European postal markets as well as fair conditions for competition. The Group reiterated again that it will undoubtedly fulfill its role as universal service provider. The Group plans to reinforce its high standards by expanding its services and intensifying its customer-oriented communication efforts in coming months.
To keep increasing its attractiveness for customers and thereby profitability across all business divisions, the Group has started the worldwide rollout of its core corporate initiative "First Choice" this year. Introduced in 2006, the program's thousands of projects are aimed at improving the quality of products and services to become the preferred logistics provider for customers worldwide.
For 2007, the Group reiterated its target to reach an EBIT of at least 3.6 billion euros. That means an increase of at least 3 percent based on the comparable year-ago figure, which included special items such as the exercise of the exchangeable bonds on Postbank shares as well as the related sale of Deutsche Postbank shares.
For its business division MAIL, the Group forecast stable to slightly higher revenue. The division expects that losses in its domestic mail business will be more than offset by the other business units. On an earnings level, the MAIL division expects a stable EBIT of about 2 billion euros. For the EXPRESS division, the Group expects an operating profit of at least 400 million euros for 2007. That includes one-time costs of 100 million euros tied to the new hub in Leipzig, Germany. Excluding these one-time costs, operating profit will amount to over 500 million euros, a more than 50 percent increase compared with the previous year. The LOGISTICS division is expected to raise EBIT by about 15 percent. For the FINANCIAL SERVICES division, the Group forecast an increase of at least 5 percent in EBIT, including one-time expenses of about 100 million euros.