BLG LOGISTICS improves result in difficult financial year

  • Revenue stable at just under EUR 1.1 billion
  • EBT significantly improved to EUR 52 million

The Board of Management of BLG LOGISTICS GROUP AG & Co. KG presented the results of the financial year 2021 at its Annual Report Press Conference on April 27, 2022.

Although 2021 was another year affected by the coronavirus pandemic and difficult market circumstances such as shortages of components, CEO Frank Dreeke summed up the year positively: “In financial year 2021 we significantly improved earnings and exceeded our expectations. Together with our workforce, we mastered the challenges. Globally, we have almost 12,000 employees, and their commitment helped us to maintain a stable customer base, and even expand it in some divisions.”

After a pre-tax loss of EUR –116.1 million in 2020, BLG LOGISTICS generated earnings before tax (EBT) of EUR 52.2 million in 2021.* The company’s equity ratio – also due to the good earnings result – is now 12.8% (2020: 5%). At just short of EUR 1.1 billion, revenue almost reached the previous year’s level (–1.4%).

* The city of Bremen injected a total of EUR 53 million in compensation for pandemic-related losses in 2020. This capital increase went directly into the share premium and is therefore not included in the statement of profit or loss.

Frank Dreeke (Chief Executive Officer)

Continued challenges in the AUTOMOBILE Division
Due to the difficult situation in the industry, the AUTOMOBILE Division achieved a negative EBT of EUR –1.1 million, which was significantly below target. Earnings were affected not only by production slowdowns in car manufacturing because of a lack of components, but also by high costs due to implementation of the coronavirus rules.

The total BLG AUTOMOBILE network handled 4.8 million vehicles. Despite the challenging situation, this was comparable to 2020. At the largest location, AutoTerminal Bremerhaven, the volume handled was similar to 2020, at some 1.7 million vehicles. The location posted negative earnings of EUR –11 million. Productivity dropped dramatically, partly due to coronavirus measures and a high level of sickness leave.

High & heavy operations benefited from the global container shortage and increased goods transport on ro-ro ships. The Neustädter Hafen also did well, with cargo handling of 1.3 million metric tons in a highly competitive environment.

Among the particular successes in this division were the joint venture with Hyundai Glovis and expansion of business in Dodendorf and Kelheim.

Good developments in the CONTRACT Division
Earnings before tax in the CONTRACT Division were EUR 8.7 million, which was significantly above the negative result in 2020 (just under EUR –14 million).

The shortage of components in the automotive industry also affected the industrial locations, however a very positive picture emerged for retail logistics.

Consumer goods and services in e-commerce were in high demand. Due to additional new business, operations in the US, South Africa and India developed better than planned. The company’s freight forwarding activities in all locations except Bremen were sold off in the first quarter of 2021.

New locations were opened for customers including PUMA as well as a food retailer. BLG also expanded services for customers such as Siemens-Energy and laid the foundation stone for its “C3 Bremen” sustainable logistics center. Almost all contracts with customers were extended, and the company also attracted new customers.

Benefits in the CONTAINER Division
The CONTAINER Division of the BLG Group is represented by the 50-percent shareholding in EUROGATE. Income from investments increased from EUR –60.7 million to EUR 61.8 million.
A total of 13.1% more containers were handled. This is attributable to strong growth driven by catch-up effects, but also to the start of operations at a second terminal in Tangier. Significant disruptions in transport schedules led to increased operational costs, but also to higher additional earnings than expected, for example from storage fees.

The Wilhelmshaven location is now well placed to achieve much stronger development due to the planned participation of Hapag-Lloyd as well as new automation projects. Wilhelmshaven also profited from the changed market conditions.

The “Future EUROGATE” transformation program progressed on schedule. In just the first eight months of the transformation process, savings in the double-digit millions were achieved.

Continued focus on future topics
In 2021, BLG continued its focus on climate protection and digitalization. The company invested some EUR 14.6 million in seven cooperation projects aimed at developing new AI-supported solutions. BLG LOGISTICS achieved a number of awards for its climate protection activities.

Global economy under pressure
BLG CEO Frank Dreeke predicts a high level of uncertainty for financial year 2022, with above all the situation in Eastern Europe significantly impacting on the global economy. “The war has additionally seriously disrupted our customers’ supply chains and production. Already we’re feeling the effects of a shortage of components and further turbulence in global supply chains. Energy prices, which were already at a high level, continue to rise drastically.” Despite all this, Dreeke is optimistic that, thanks to its broad diversification, BLG will prosper even in these difficult framework conditions.

The full annual reporting, including an online magazine, is available for download at reporting.blg-logistics.com.

Christine Hein (Chief Financial Officer)
BLG LOGISTICS and Hyundai Glovis agree joint venture for AutoTerminal Bremerhaven
Foundation stone laid for C3 Bremen: largest continuous photovoltaic roof area
BLG starts operations at PUMA's European logistics center in Geiselwind, Germany

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