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KEP in Poland

The courier, express and postal delivery market, or KEP for short, has been experiencing continuous growth for many years now, and its value growth has surpassed the ceiling of 17 billion zlotys. This is according to the latest "Polish CEP Report 2022". So let's take a look at the details.

About the KEP market

The history of the KEP market is quite long, dating back to the beginning of the 20th century. It was then that the first courier companies began to be established in the USA. The KEP industry includes large operators as well as smaller companies that specialize in specific services. Due to the activities undertaken in the field of courier services, companies from the KEP market are the most popular enterprises in the logistics industry. The KEP market, on a global scale, is very huge. It is estimated that approximately 200 million parcels are handled every day. Over 4 million people are employed in the KEP industry, of which 2.5 million are couriers. There are also over 2.5 million courier cars, several hundred thousand trucks and thousands of planes in operation. They therefore create a very extensive logistics network. The history of the KEP industry in Poland is, of course, much shorter, as the first fast delivery services have been provided for 30 years. Initially, these were companies with external capital, later they started to appear with Polish capital. Domestic companies developed immediately, which resulted in them being taken over by foreign entities. This led to the consolidation of the market, where only a few entities currently operate. Over the past years, there have been several reasons that have influenced the development of the industry - modifications in the construction of retail stores, the growing trend of logistics outsourcing, the need to reduce delivery times, and the reduction of inventories. Companies from the KEP industry, wanting to remain competitive, began to offer comprehensive services on a one-stop-shopping basis - i.e. available in one place. Currently, the KEP shipment sector is one of the most growing logistics fields. The most important factor driving development is digital evolution, and more specifically, e-commerce.

The KEP industry continues to experience rapid development around the world, and this is especially noticeable in developing countries. This growth is related to the increasing demand in online commerce and the growing middle-class population and its affluence. New technologies are transforming the supply chain and redefining the KEP industry. They contribute to improving efficiency and fulfilling customer expectations. In 2018, the value of the global KEP market was EUR 306.2 billion. In 2019, the value volume increased to EUR 330.3 billion – an increase of 7.9%. In 2021, the value of the KEP market reached EUR 403 billion. It is expected that the market value will grow in the following years and in 2023 it will amount to EUR 466 billion.

KEP in Europe

In 2018, the European KEP market had a value of EUR 67.8 billion and accounted for 22.1% of the global market value. Domestic shipments had the largest share in the KEP market in Europe, while foreign shipments were estimated at 25%. The B2B area was valued at EUR 35 billion, B2C at EUR 22 billion, and C2X was valued at EUR 11 billion. In Business to business, the parcels that were sent came from institutions. The addressees in business to customer are individual consumers. In the case of C2X, i.e. in the relationship between a consumer and another consumer or business, shipments were delivered to individual customers. Returns were made to online retailers and some shipments were made to small businesses. The European KEP market is mainly focused on countries such as Poland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy, Great Britain, and Spain. These countries account for as much as 76% of GDP in Europe and generate 80% of revenues on the European KEP market. The highest rate of parcels per citizen is in Germany, France, Austria, the Benelux countries and the United Kingdom. The German KEP market is the largest parcel market in Europe. 3.52 billion shipments generated revenue of EUR 20.4 billion. The parcel market in our western neighbor shows great potential, but is also characterized by the presence of many postal entities. In 2019, the KEP market in Europe reached the value of EUR 71.1 billion, growing by 4.9%. 10.6 billion shipments were handled, i.e. 4.9% more compared to the same periods. The year 2020 brought an increase in the value of the volume to EUR 74.5 billion and 11.2 parcel shipments. Specialists forecast that within three years the value of the European KEP market will increase to EUR 81.8 billion, with approximately EUR 12.5 billion serviced.

KEP in Poland

The courier, express and postal shipments market in Poland, but also worldwide, is considered one of the fastest growing areas of the logistics sector. The growth rate is approximately 3 times faster than the growth rate of Poland's GDP. This indicates that the possibilities of the KEP market will remain inexhaustible for a long time. As you can see, the number of shipments is constantly growing faster than the market value volume. Comparing it with other countries, it can be concluded that it is quite small, as its value is only 2.5% of the European market. Poczta Polska - as the national postal operator in our country - handled over 476 million parcels in 2018. For comparison, in 2014 there were 273 million. Poland is one of the fastest growing markets in Europe in terms of parcel collection points. According to the 2022 Last Mile Experts OOH report, there are over 74,000 of them in Poland, of which almost 20,000. these are APMs. Looking at the Polish CEP 2022 report, you can find out that almost every fifth Polish citizen makes purchases (not groceries) online. CAGR data indicate that total trade using e-commerce channels in 2021 exceeded PLN 100 billion and grew by an average of 28.1% annually. The Polish CEP 2022 report states that in 2022, the domestic CEP market is valued at PLN 17 billion, and according to assumptions regarding the years 2021-2023, it will maintain a double-digit growth trend. In terms of volume, it was 14.1% and in terms of value it was 19.9%. In 2021, the fastest growing segment was e-grocery - the online grocery shopping market, but in relation to the total it amounted to only 4%. The largest number of purchases concerned electronics (24%) and clothes, which are recorded at 15%. Currently, the areas used by the e-commerce industry in Poland occupy almost 7.5 million square meters - this is 30% of the total supply. Analyzing this with data from 2019, it is an increase of 84%. The Polish CEP 2022 report shows that the dynamic growth of the e-commerce and CEP markets will continue, despite the difficult economic situation and the tensions between countries. PLN 17 billion seems to be an overestimated value, because in 2018 the value of the KEP market was only PLN 7 billion. What the value will be at the end of 2022, time will tell.

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