C.H. Robinson reports revenue fall in a “soft freight environment”

posted on 31st July 2019 by Justin Burns
C.H. Robinson reports revenue fall in a "soft freight environment"

C.H. Robinson has reported that its total revenues decreased 8.6 per cent to $3.9 billion in the second quarter and net income rose 6.3 per cent to $169.2 million.

The largest North American third-party logistics provider (3PL) said the revenue fall was due to lower pricing across most transportation service lines.

C.H. Robinson’s global forwarding segment’s total revenues fell by 4.1 per cent to $592.5 million, primarily driven by lower pricing in ocean and air and a decline in air volume. Net revenues decreased 1.5 per cent in the quarter to $141.9 million.

Net revenues in air decreased 12.2 per cent, as a decline in shipments more than offset margin expansion. Income from operations decreased 10.6 per cent to $26.6 million, and operating margin declined 190 basis points to 18.8 per cent in the quarter.

C.H. Robinson said the acquisition of The Space Cargo Group contributed three percentage points of net revenue growth in the quarter.

Chief executive officer Bob Biesterfeld said: “Despite the current freight environment, our long-term goals remain unchanged. We remain focused on taking market share, automating core processes while delivering industry-leading quality service to our customers and carriers, and improving operating leverage in our businesses.

“In the second quarter, we achieved 3.5 per cent net revenue growth, solid performance versus the year-ago period where net revenues increased 17 per cent. We delivered our fifth consecutive quarter of operating margin expansion and an 8 per cent increase in earnings per share.”

He added: “We continued to make improvements in working capital, which combined with increased earnings, allowed us to generate nearly $200 million in cash flow from operations and increase cash returns to our shareholders. We are pleased with our second quarter results in this soft freight environment.”

He said that the company expects a “soft freight environment to continue through the balance of 2019”.

“We remain focused on taking market share, automating core processes while delivering industry-leading quality service to our customers and carriers, and improving operating leverage in our businesses,” Biesterfeld added.