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TNT Express CEO Lombard resigns

Industry analyst says CEO departure will not halt completion of UPS-TNT deal
By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
September 26, 2012

Earlier this week, the Supervisory Board of TNT Express, a Netherlands-based provider of mail and courier services and the fourth largest global parcel operator, announced that Marie-Christine Lombard, TNT Express CEO, resigned “to pursue an external career opportunity.”

Company officials said Lombard will leave TNT Express by the end of this month and added that Lombard will be replaced by Bernard Bot, CFO, as interim CEO, and Mary Harris, TNT Supervisory Board member, provide advice and support to Bot and the management team.

Lombard’s departure comes at a time when TNT Express is in the process of being acquired by UPS for more than $6 billion in a transaction, which according to company officials will create a global leader in the logistics industry with more than $60 billion in annual revenues and an enhanced, integrated global network. The deal is currently under review by the European Commission, with the Offer Period recently extended from August 31 to November 9.

In August TNT and UPS said that conditions for the offer to be completed—specifically the European Union (EU) antitrust condition—would not be met by the initial August 31 expiration date.

“It is regrettable that Marie-Christine has decided to leave TNT Express now,” said Antony Burgmans, Chairman of the Supervisory Board for TNT, in a statement. “We thank Marie-Christine for her contributions and wish her well for the future. This development has no bearing on the intended merger with UPS, which we expect to complete in early 2013. Moreover, the underlying business remains robust and continues to be well managed by an experienced Management Board. We have complete confidence in Bernard’s ability to lead the business and to see through the merger with UPS.”

A noted parcel analyst told LM that he is confident that UPS will purchase TNT.

“There are two questions yet to be settled,” said Jerry Hempstead, principal of Hempstead Consulting. “One is ‘how much of TNT will UPS be allowed to purchase?’ and then how long might it take to dispose of assets that are viewed as anti competitive and which assets are they?”

As previously reported, the joint synergies expected to result from this deal, according to UPS and TNT include:
-the complementary strengths of both organizations creating a customer-focused global platform that will be a leader in transportation technology and customer service;
-TNT Express customers benefiting from UPS’s unparalleled access to the North American market as well as access to its logistics solutions, such as global freight forwarding and distribution capabilities; and
-UPS customers will benefit from access to expanded express and road freight capabilities in Europe and broader capabilities in fast-growing regions such as Asia-Pacific and Latin America.

“We intend to leverage the strengths of both companies to enhance the combined growth portfolio and believe all stakeholders will benefit,” said UPS Chairman and CEO Scott Davis on an investor call in March. “UPS possesses a large U.S. presence, as well as experience in global supply chain management. TNT Express provides additional small package access points in Europe, the most extensive European express road network, and an expanding presence in emerging markets.”

Over the years, TNT has grown into a highly respected $7.25 billion euro company with diverse revenue streams from around the world with operations in more than 200 countries in Europe, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and Latin America, said UPS CFO Kurt Kuehn on the March investor call. And he added TNT has a substantial group of assets, including aircraft, vehicles, hubs, and depots, which cumulatively account for about 1 million deliveries per day handled by its 77,000 employees. IN 2011, TNT had a net loss of $270 million euro and $7.2 billion euro in revenue.

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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