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Toll sees shift away from airfreight

By Hpanchal on August 30, 2012

An industry-wide shift from airfreight to seafreight affected Toll Global Forwarding’s cargo traffic in fiscal-year 2011-2012, which ended June 30. In addition to recording a drop in airfreight, the international freight forwarder also saw earnings fall from $34 million to $20.6 million during the financial year.

Toll Global Forwarding’s parent company Toll Holdings similarly reported financial difficulties during the fiscal year. Toll’s net profit plunged 76 percent, year-over-year, to $71 million, despite the company reporting a 6 percent, year-over-year, revenue surge during the financial year. The company’s EBIT also slowed during this period, declining 6 percent, year-over-year.

In a press release, Toll attributed the most staggering of these losses to write-downs on its Japanese and Australian properties. Without the $203 million in impairments related to Toll Express Japan (Footwork Express) and the company’s Australian assets, Toll’s net profit would have only declined 6 percent, year-over-year.

Toll explained in the press release that Footwork Express, which performs LTL trucking services, continues to be affected by the economic slowdown following the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Toll Group Managing Director Brian Kruger revealed that the company is currently conducting a strategic review of the Japanese division.

Despite these challenges, Kruger said company stakeholders have reason for optimism. “While we don’t expect any short-term improvement in external conditions, recent new contract wins, combined with our ongoing investment in fleet, property and IT, will help us support future earnings growth,” he said in a statement. “Toll is well positioned to continue sustainable, disciplined growth in the years to come.”

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