In the first half of 2019, the Kuehne + Nagel Group increased net turnover by 5.3%, gross profit by 5.5% and EBIT by 2.0% compared to the previous year's period.
Seafreight and overland continued the growth momentum of the first quarter. In light of the deteriorating market environment, airfreight experienced a decrease in volume. The restructuring in contract logistics proceeded according to plan.
Seafreight successfully grew volume in the first half of the year by 4.5%, while the overall market grew by only 2.5%. With 2.392 million standard containers (TEU), the Group managed 103,000 units more than in the same period of the previous year. The Group's selective growth strategy, effective cost control and focus on customer service are yielding results. The demand for digital seafreight solutions has also shown positive developments.
In overland, net turnover increased by 3.3% and gross profit by 4.9%. Growth in this business was well above the market, however it slowed down in the second quarter in line with market trends. The primary growth drivers in Europe were Germany and France, while large customers performed well in North America. Due to falling oil prices, intermodal business in the US and project business in Middle East & Africa stagnated. With a new digital booking platform, Kuehne + Nagel expanded its offering for overland in Asia. Initially implemented in Thailand, the platform will be rolled out gradually throughout Southeast Asia. EBIT improved by 4.7% to CHF 45 million.
Restructuring in contract logistics continued through the second quarter. Net turnover increased by 4.4% and gross profit by 2.7% compared to the same period of the previous year. New business in pharma & healthcare, as well as e-commerce fulfilment, yielded positive results. Further efficiency gains are expected in the future leveraging the implementation of the global warehouse management system combined with the new picking technology, already deployed in more than 100 warehouses. EBIT was below last year‘s figure at CHF 57 million.