Dutch postal firm PostNL has put its German and Italian subsidiaries up for sale in order to focus on the Benelux markets.
‘In line with our strategy to be the postal and logistic solutions provider and the focus on our core markets in the Benelux, we have decided to divest Nexive and Postcon,’ chief executive Herna Verhagen said in a statement.
‘The preparations for the divestment processes have been started and we will update the market when appropriate.’
The company is still grappling with the downturn in letter post and said on Monday the rise in parcel deliveries is not enough to offset the losses.
In the second quarter of last year, letter post to the value of €434m was sent via PostNL but this fell to €400m in the second quarter of 2018. At the same time, the value of parcel post rose from €266m to €322m.
PostNL, which is almost halving the number of letter boxes in the Netherlands, is required by law to deliver mail five days a week.
Verhagen said that she welcomed government moves to change the way the ‘strongly declining postal market is regulated’, saying this is ‘a crucial step’.
The government said in June it had decided to allow delivery firms to merge and consolidate to keep services affordable. That would allow PostNL to join forces with its private sector rival Sandd, which has made major inroads into the business mail sector in recent years.
‘Given the pace of the changes in the postal market, facilitating such consolidation will require swift political action,’ Verhagen said.
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