TNT Express struggles as suitors emerge

TNT Express, fresh from reporting a US$225 million net loss in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to a net profit of $5.2 million a year earlier, plans to refocus on its core European market, trim international operations and reduce its freighter fleet to stem rising losses and return to profitability.


TNT Express suitors emerge


TNT Express, fresh from reporting a US$225 million net loss in the fourth quarter of 2011 compared to a net profit of $5.2 million a year earlier, plans to refocus on its core European market, trim international operations and reduce its freighter fleet to stem rising losses and return to profitability.

The poor results prompted two of TNT’s minority shareholders, Canada’s Alberta Investment Management (Aimco) and US hedge fund Jana Partners, each holding five per cent, have called for
the departure of CEO Marie-Christine Lombard.

They point to TNT’s poor results and describe the strategy put in place by management as inadequate. Since June, the TNT operation has been split into two enterprises: TNT Express and Post NL. Het Fnancieele, a senior official at Aimco, said: “We have effectively spoken of a change in the leadership of the executive board of TNT Express.”

Hit by the slowdown in the global economy, TNT Express has already revised down its results outlook for the current financial year. In addition to mediocre performances in Europe and in Asia, the group also faces operational difficulties in Brazil.

Aimco and Jana have also called for a shake-out in parent TNT’s supervisory board, claiming that half of its members are from the former TNT Post postal division and are hampering strategic decision-making at TNT Express. The disquiet among the minority
shareholders comes at a time when the 29.9 per cent stake held by Post NL in TNT Express is no longer protected by a ‘lock-up’ procedure, prohibiting it from being opened up to the market.