DHL ends delivery and assembly service for Ikea and Karstadt

Deutsche Post subsidiary DHL said on Monday it will no longer deliver and assemble goods from Ikea and department store Karstadt. Customers who need help putting together their Billy bookshelves are now on their own.

DHL ends delivery and assembly service for Ikea and Karstadt
Photo: DPA

The Financial Times Deutschland reported the logistics giant does not feel that the home delivery service is profitable.

“It’s just not worth it,” a Deutsche Post official told the paper.

The end of the home delivery portion of Deutsche Post’s relationship with troubled chain Karstadt marks the further deterioration of a once-lucrative business with Arcandor, Karstadt’s parent company, which has filed for insolvency. Arcandor’s financial troubles have led to at least €250 million in losses for Deutsche Post.

DHL’s logistics contract with Karstadt – which also includes shipping services to its stores – once earned Bonn-based Post around €500 million annually. After the discontinuation of the home delivery service, that number will drop to around €150 million, according to Post sources.

The termination of the delivery contract with Swedish home furnishings chain Ikea – in Austria as well as Germany – will affect a business thought to be worth €15 million a year. As with Karstadt, DHL will continue to provide some logistics services to Ikea, such as long-distance freight transport.


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Can you rely on Sweden’s Postnord to deliver cards and presents on time?

Wednesday marks the last day you can send first class letters or parcels in Sweden and still hope they'll make it in time for Christmas Eve. But how reliable is PostNord, the company which runs Sweden's postal service?

Can you rely on Sweden's Postnord to deliver cards and presents on time?

What can you still send and hope for it to be delivered by Christmas? 

The Christmas deadline for letters and parcels outside of Sweden already passed on December 12th, as has the deadline for ordering anything online and hoping for it to arrive on time, with most e-commerce companies advising customers that anything ordered later than December 19th will not arrive in time. 

But if you’re sending first-class letters, pre-paid parcels, and small packages for delivery through the letterbox, you can still send them up until December 21st. The same goes for other parcel services such as Postnord MyPack Home, PostNord MyPack Home small, PostNord MyPack Collect, and Postpaket parcels.  

And if you’re willing to pay a bit extra, you can send express mail letters, express parcels, and first class ‘varubrev’ small parcels up until December 22nd. 

“Those dates still apply. We have written in a press statement that if you send by those dates you can be pretty sure that they will arrive in time,” Anders Porelius, head of press at PostNord, told The Local on Tuesday. 

But can you trust Postnord to deliver when they say they will? 

Not entirely.

The Swedish Post and Telecom Authority, Sweden’s postal regulator, ruled on December 8th that the company was failing to meet its regulatory target of delivering 95 percent of all letters within two working days, with 28 million letters delivered late between June and November. 

An investigative documentary by TV4’s Kalla Fakta (Cold Facts) programme, was sent pictures showing huge piles of late, undelivered letters in one of PostNord’s terminals, and interviewed postal workers who said that they were unable to complete their deliveries now they had been moved from daily to every other day, as they had twice as many letters to deliver on the days when they worked. 

“You get yelled at by the customers, and rightly so, you get yelled at by your bosses, and you scold yourself because you feel like you’re not able to do enough,” said Emilia Leijon, one postal worker. “We pretty much never manage to deliver a whole satchel. There’s too much post and too little time.” 

What is PostNord doing about the delays? 

The Swedish Post and Telecom Authority has given the company until January 30th to carry out an analysis into why it is not managing to meet its targets, and to draw up an action plan of how it is going to improve.