Corporate Portrait

Customer-centric services along the global value chain

(Photo: Hermes)

A variety of specialised companies operate under the Hermes brand, all of which combine to render a full range of services along the retail value chain in demand around the world.

Hermes was founded in 1972 and is wholly-owned subsidiary of the Otto Group. Today, the company is a leading specialist for retail-related services and partners numerous distance sellers as well as multichannel and online retailers in Germany and internationally. The range of services provided by Hermes companies embraces the full length of the supply chain: including sourcing – i.e. the procurement of materials and products – quality assurance, transport logistics, fulfilment – i.e. the end-to-end processing of the distribution chain, for the customer's order through to returns management – parcel delivery, two-man handling and global e-commerce services. The Hermes Group employs nearly 15,300 people worldwide, has six parcel companies in Europe's key e-commerce markets and has operations in 22 countries.

€3.13 bn

The Hermes Group grew its overall revenue to €3.13 bn in the 2017 financial year.

Constant growth and record results

In the 2017 financial year, the Hermes Group enjoyed double-digit growth and was able to chalk up profitable gains primarily in key European markets. The Hamburg-based trading and logistics provider grew its revenue in the 2017 financial year by over twelve percent – adjusted for currency translation effects – to 3.13 billion euros. [1]

The crucial factor behind this is the positive trend recorded by Hermes parcel and two-man handling companies both in Germany and abroad which account for over 85% of revenue. This means that Hermes parcel companies in Germany, the UK, France, Austria, Italy and Russia were clearly able to participate in the ongoing boom in e-commerce, transporting over 766 million parcels to end customers throughout Europe – up 15% year on year.

As a result, Hermes built on its No. 2 ranking on major European markets for courier-express-parcel services (CEP) and consolidated its market-leading position in two-man handling in both Germany and France.

Investment and expansion for greater customer centricity

In 2018, the Hermes Group is looking to place greater focus on customers – especially in the emerging international markets. This means expanding the Hermes Group's global service portfolio. This is to be achieved over three strategic pillars:

  1. Continued investment in digitisation and innovation
  2. Significant international growth
  3. Greater flexibility in the final mile

Reporting companies

The current sustainability report focuses on two companies: Hermes Germany GmbH (HG) and Hermes Einrichtungs Service GmbH & Co. KG (HES).

Headquartered in Hamburg, Hermes Germany is a leading logistics provider and partner to numerous online shops and multichannel retailers in Germany and abroad. Hermes Germany targets national and international parcel deliveries and processes the upstream flow of goods. In its efforts to drive its internationalisation activities, in March 2018 Hermes pooled its cross-border business in a new, independent business unit – Hermes International. The start-up BorderGuru numbers among these, a company increasingly dedicated to the e-commerce markets in Asia and the USA and whose clients include the global retailing giant Alibaba and the US retailer Revolve.

Hermes Germany maintains 15,000 ParcelShops in Germany - the largest national network targeting private customers in Europe. In addition, Hermes is investing in the restructuring of is logistics infrastructure: by 2020 it will have a network of 35 state-of-the-art, highly efficient logistics centres. The company has 5,555 employees (as of: 12/2017).

Located in Löhne, Hermes Einrichtungs Service is a joint venture between Hermes Germany and Sänger Service GmbH. The market leader in bulky goods and specialist in 2-man handling, the company offers services from the delivery to the assembly and installation of larger shipments such as furniture, TVs and household appliances. With its 47 German and ten national depots, HES delivers to private customers in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands. 382 employees work for HES (as of: 12/2017).

Head office of the Hermes Group is in Hamburg. All groupwide processes are coordinated under the umbrella organisation of Hermes Europe GmbH (HE). The twelve Hermes companies are managed independently by the managing directors. Since November 2014, Hermes Europe GmbH also has a Supervisory Board. Chairman of this monitoring body is Kay Schiebur, Member of the Executive Board Services Otto Group.

[1] Consolidation effect: 2017 result without Hermes France Group + Liefery: EUR 2.822 bn (up 11.5% on 2016)


Hermes Germany maintains 15,000 ParcelShops in Germany - the largest national network targeting private customers in Europe.

Customer centricity and sustainable services

Sustainable services for urban areas

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As part of the Hermes Group, both Hermes Germany and Hermes Einrichtungs Service offer a range of customer services along the retail value chain. When shaping its services for the long term, it places particular focus on the following segments:

  • Distribution logistics final mile: Hermes ships around 2 million parcels daily to households around Germany. The best part of these deliveries is carried out by a network of contracting partners. Environmentally and socially compatible aspects are crucial to Hermes. As the first and only logistics provider in Germany, Hermes has been auditing its contracting partner on issues such as compliance with minimum wage and working time laws, which is carried out by the independent organisation SGS-TÜV Saar. In addition, Hermes is also investing in the successive electrification of its fleet of vehicles.

  • Customer contact: Customer-centric services that meet customer expectations and wishes are top priority at Hermes. It is continually working to optimise its processes and to expand its portfolio of services. Issues such as reliability, flexibility and sustainability are the heart of our contact with customers.

  • Hermes logistics centres: At present, Hermes is investing in its logistics infrastructure in order to equip itself for the rapid growth in volume. By 2020, Hermes will have build nine new logistics centres throughout Germany to clearly enhance its processing capacity. Some 300 million euros has been set aside for the programme. Construction work places as much store on state-of-the-art technology as it does on the responsible management of resources and the environment.

  • Distribution logistics line haul: Transporting shipments from the logistics centres to the depots and distribution centres, from where the home deliveries are made, is for Hermes a significant segment in terms of reliable and sustainable logistics. Here, Hermes is actively committed to developing solutions on issues such as the shortage of specialist staff and the environmental impact of CO2 emissions.

  • Sourcing: As an important element of procurement logistics, Hermes provides individual solutions for an efficient and sustainable supply chain management. Furthermore, the import and export of goods from the Far East is a key field of business for Hermes Germany and for Hermes International. The company transports goods from some 30 countries for clients from around the world - on water, on the ground, by rail or in the air. In doing so, Hermes can count on a network of partners such as airlines and shipping companies.