Deutsche Post, Europe's biggest mail and express delivery company, reported earnings on Tuesday that narrowly missed analysts' expectations and gave a downbeat assessment of the business going into next year.
Third -quarter revenue came in at 13.5 billion euros, against estimates of 13.96 billion euros in a Dow Jones poll. Net profit also missed expectations with a figure of 399 million euros, versus expectations of 411 million euros. Operating profit - earnings before interest and tax - did beat estimates, however.
Frank Appel, CEO of Deutsche Post put the miss down to fluctuations in foreign exchange interest rates and said the company had a "solid quarter".
"We are happy with the quarter," he told CNBC Tuesday. But he gave a dour view of the postal industry going forward.
"Overall we haven't seen a recovery for the world yet....we have to wait in the next months. So I'm not really an optimist yet" he said.
"Hopefully 2014 will be better."
Appel added that the firm saw a slight improvement in its figures in Europe, but added that this could simply be an increase in market shares rather than a surge in demand. Its German online division remains very strong, with 10 percent growth in parcels, he added.
Many postal firms have suffered in recent years with the introduction of e-mail and the drop in sales from stamps. The U.S. Postal Service announced on Monday that it was teaming up with online retailer Amazon to offer customers Sunday deliveries in a bid to boost revenues.
Appel said Deustche Post had trialed Sunday deliveries at Christmas last year and would monitor their success very closely.
"There will be a constant need for improving the convenience to customers. We will look into the future to what we should do to make the product more convenient," he said.
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