2020 was a particularly challenging year for businesses of all sizes, for individuals of all ages and for policymakers. As it was for Swiss Post. As a company, Swiss Post is highly relevant to Switzerland. This has been especially evident in this difficult year, with all the challenges the coronavirus pandemic has brought. Swiss Post has proven that it can be relied upon. While the restrictions on public life were in place, the important role that Swiss Post plays for the country and for our customers became clear. The resilience of our organization and our ability to cope with crisis were put to the test. During this period, the concept of the universal service acquired an immediate and tangible significance in the everyday lives of the people living this country. Almost all of Swiss Post’s units were pushed to their limits, and some beyond. Each and every employee worked with a sense of responsibility and in a spirit of solidarity to ensure that the public service was provided in full for the benefit of the public and the Swiss economy. That deserves our respect and a big thank you.
Swiss Post will remain a company that finances high-quality public services from its own resources.
Last year, our mail carriers delivered 1,706 million addressed letters and more than 191 million parcels. PostBus transported 127 million passengers, and 2.7 million customers placed their trust in PostFinance’s financial services. In the parcel segment in particular, 2020 saw a record volume of items processed. And despite these major achievements, we could not avoid financial losses of more than 139 million Swiss francs as a result of the pandemic.
The past year also marks the end of the four-year 2017–2020 strategy period. Despite the challenges presented by the pandemic, we also developed a new strategy in 2020. This maps out how Swiss Post will continue its success story in the future. The new “Swiss Post of tomorrow” strategy sets the course for guaranteeing that Swiss Post remains relevant to Switzerland in the years to come. It also addresses Swiss Post’s self-financing, and in particular the financing of our universal service obligation. The high quality of our products and services was and is associated with significant investments. The positive results of recent years have given us a stable financial basis on which we can build. We live in fast-moving times, and it is not enough to simply respond to events and new circumstances. We have to shape our own path and make investments that enable future growth. To do that, we have to take entrepreneurial risks and open up our cooperation models.
Swiss Post can be relied upon, as we have proven during the pandemic crisis. The resilience and high quality of our products and services was and is associated with significant investments.
Swiss Post is and will remain a public service company that provides the people and businesses of this country with the best postal services that extend well beyond the traditional universal service. This is confirmed by the comparison undertaken the Universal Postal Union, which has again named us “the world’s best postal service”. Swiss Post can only ensure this quality of service in the longer term if it continues to develop and consistently pursues its focus on the future needs of the Swiss public and economy. To do this, we are building on our traditional strengths and competencies and focusing on future- oriented areas in logistics, communication, mobility and financial services. These will allow us to grow and make profits, which in turn can be invested in the future. We want to remain a company that finances high-quality public services from its own resources.
On behalf of the Board of Directors and Executive Management, we would like to thank all our employees for their exceptional commitment in 2020. We would also like to thank our customers for the confidence they place in us every day.