Dubai-listed express and logistics provider Aramex, reported second-quarter profit was down 23% to 97 million dirhams (US$26.4 million) as it was hit by currency fluctuations and a one-off impairment related to the company’s investment in AMC Logistics joint venture in Egypt.
The company which is increasingly involved in regional online shopping said that revenue grew by about 2% over the quarter to 1.48 billion dirhams.
The express and logistics company said that performance in the Gulf had been “relatively slow” during the quarter because of holidays and “ongoing economic uncertainty.”
Aramex noted, however, that its express services recorded double-digit growth in Q2 2017 and continue to be the main contributor to the company’s financial performance.
Excited about future opportunities
The company added: “Cross-border e-commerce in particular was the key driver for revenue growth especially in Asia-Pacific where customer demand for package delivery services across the region continues to rise.”
Aramex CEO Hussein Hachem said: "Looking towards the second half of 2017, we are excited about our future prospects for growth, and will be actively identifying acquisitions and strategic partnerships to expand our global reach.”
The Gulf e-commerce sector is expected to grow to about $20 billion by the end of decade compared to about $5.3 billion in 2015.
Growth projections like this have triggered a flurry of investments in the sector.
Earlier this year Amazon bought online marketplace Souq.com while Emaar executive chairman Mohamed Alabbar is setting up his own e-commerce venture called Noon.com. The billionaire businessman last year became an investor in Aramex.
Australia Post and Aramex stay friends
In another development, the former managing director and Group CEO of Australia Post, Ahmed Fahour, will continue to be Australia Post’s nominee director on the board of Aramex for a transitional period of up to six months.
In a statement, Australia Post said Fahour's additional time as an Aramex director is in the best interests of the business, ensuring continuity in the role while Australia Post transitions to new managing director and Group CEO, Christine Holgate. Ms Holgate will take up her new position at Australia Post in late October."
The statement also said that Australia Post’s relationship with Aramex "is important in its strategy to grow parcel volumes and secure jobs by connecting Australian businesses and consumers with emerging global eCommerce markets, particularly in Asia."
The alliance between Australia Post and Aramex includes a Singapore-based joint venture eCommerce business.
Nol van Fenema