TNT has a long and interesting history spanning more than 250 years. Our Dutch roots can be traced back to 1752. But it wasn’t until 1946 that the company known as TNT was born, on the other side of the world, in Australia. In the 60 years since then, TNT has grown into a global enterprise, even operating its own aircraft. Much of this growth has come from take-overs and acquisitions.


History of the company


Establishment of State post


In the early part of 18th century, cities owned the principal postal services. Cities gradually relinquished their roles as postmasters to Stadhouder Willem IV. The "states" thus obtained the right to operate postal services. This resulted in 1752 in the establishment of Statenpost, which secured inland monopolies. The new postal institution enjoyed a stronger position than its fragmented predecessors in dealings with foreign postal organisations.


PTT Post


In 1799, Dutch postal services were reorganised into a single national enterprise based on the French model.This formed the basis of PTT Post.



The first Postal Act


In 1807, the Dutch postal service became part of the Ministry of Finance. The first Postal Act regulated the collection, conveyance and delivery of letters. In addition to this, the same rates (based on weights and distances) applied throughout the country. Because the postal service was required to make a substantial contribution to the Treasury coffers, it resembled more a tax-raising body than a transport company working for the public. Gradually the government came round to a different way of thinking. The Postal Act of 1850 explicitly stated that the postal service existed to serve the public interest. The postal monopoly was defined and postal tariffs were simplified.


The first stamp


The postage stamp appeared in 1852. In the same year, every municipality in the Netherlands acquired facilities for the posting and collection of letters. By 1870, the country had a well-organised postal service. Attention now shifted to introducing new services, like the postcard and parcel post.



First sorting machine


The economic depression of the 1930s hit the Dutch postal service. Postage rates had to be reduced and savings had to be made on all fronts. Mechanisation provided a good way of cutting costs. The Marchand Transorma, a sorting machine that divided mail into four hundred destinations, was developed in 1931. The operators first had to key in a code, however. Mail was delivered increasingly faster, not least because its conveyance was organised more efficiently. Items posted before six in the evening were delivered the next morning. To cut costs, the number of delivery rounds each day was reduced from three to two. In the 1930s, the postal company started to become more commercially oriented and mounted a major advertising campaign.


Foundation of TNT


TNT's roots are in Australia. In 1946, Ken Thomas started his own company - Thomas Nationwide Transport - with a fleet consisting of a single truck. In under half a century, his company grew into a global enterprise, even operating its own fleet of aircraft. Much of the growth came from take-overs and interests acquired in other companies.





In the aftermath of the Second World War, the Netherland's postal company operated at a loss. Prices were raised and steps were taken to reduce labour costs. The first analysis of national traffic streams and the average number of items processed each day took place in 1949. The findings led to the closure of some smaller "mail offices". But more rigorous measures proved necessary. By the 1960s, the Dutch postal company faced the same challenge as its counterparts in other countries: it had to work faster and more efficiently.


Scaling up


The solution in the 1960s and 1970s was to operate on a bigger scale. Work was concentrated at larger operational units. All mail was now processed at 18 "mail interchange centres". To handle the huge volumes of mail that poured into these centres, the postal company installed highly efficient culling, facing and cancelling equipment.



Listing of TNT


In 1961, TNT was listed on the Sydney stock exchange.


Introduction postal code


The postal code was introduced in 1977, allowing further automation and sorting all the way down to a postman's walk as opposed to a city. The present system of one delivery round a day was introduced in the 1970s.





Telecommunication services such as the telex, fax and e-mail grew in popularity in the 1980s as a means of correspondence. The Netherlands PTT recognised that what we now call the "information society" was about to be born. Fast and effective action had to be taken to respond to the changing requirements of customers.

Dutch post ceased to be a state enterprise on 1 January 1989. It became a private company called PTT Nederland NV. The change gave the company greater scope to respond to developments in a fast-changing market. Privatisation was the launch pad for the strong position that PTT Post had built up in the international marketplace.


Participation in GDEW


In 1992, TNT’s international time-sensitive freight operations of TNT Express Europe, TNT Skypak and TNT Mailfast combined with the international time-sensitive mail services businesses of KPN and the post offices of Canada, France, Germany and Sweden to form GD Express Worldwide (GDEW). TNT owns 50 percent of GDEW. A close commercial relationship began to grow between TNT and PTT Post.



KPN Flotation I


The State of the Netherlands sold 30 percent of its shares in PTT Nederland NV in June 1994. Under its new name of Royal PTT Nederland NV (KPN), the combined postal/telecommunications company obtained a listing on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange. Following privatisation in 1989, the status as a listed company further reinforced the company's business potential.


KPN Flotation II


After selling another 25 percent of its original holding, the State of the Netherlands no longer had a controlling interest in KPN. This change was a clear signal to the international market. After Amsterdam, the company obtained a listing on the New York Stock Exchange, followed in 1996 by listings in Frankfurt and London.



Acquisition of TNT


TNT and KPN announced on 2 October 1996 that KPN was going to make a public bid for TNT. The friendly take-over was completed in December 1996. Together, TNT and PTT Post embarked on a new era. Important steps were taken toward the integration of the business activities of TNT and PTT Post. TNT activities outside of its core business (Mail, Express and Logistics) were sold off.


Opening of TNT European Express Centre in Liège


On 27 April 1998, TNT opened the its European Express Centre (EEC) in Liège, Belgium. The EEC contains six state-of-the-art-sorting units. It operates three sorting systems: one for documents, one for parcels and one for aircraft containers. It processes all freight consignments within Europe and forms the link with the rest of the world. It is designed to handle 1,000 tonnes of freight per night, with the ability to add capacity for future growth.





On Monday 29 June 1998, TNT Post Group seperated from KPN. Since that date, TPG stock is listed independently on the stock exchanges of Amsterdam, New York, London and Frankfurt.


Opening of international road hub and national depot in Duiven


In October 1998, a new international road hub and national depot began operating in Duiven, the Netherlands. The facility is designed to accommodate projected growth until the year 2003, with the possibility of modular expansion of capacity and office space.



Opening of six new PTT Post sorting centres


On 30 November 1998, His Royal Highness The Prince of Orange, of the Netherlands officially opened six new sorting centres. They replaced the former 12 exchange centres.


Acquisition of Jet Services


In December 1998, TPG acquired the express company Jet Services S.A. in France. TPG bought 100 percent of the shares from Financière Jet Services S.A. Founded in 1973, Jet Services provides express services in France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Hungary and Switzerland.



PTT Post becomes Royal PTT Post


On the occasion of its 200-year anniversary on 15 January 1999 PTT Post is granted the title ‘Royal PTT Post’. Reason for Royal PTT Post to introduce a new logo. Next to this the company issued a special stamp.


Acquisition of Tecnologistica


In February 1999, TPG announced its acquisition of the Italian logistics company Tecnologistica. Tecnologistica operates in Italy, Germany and France.



Memorandum of Understanding with China State Post


In September 1999 TPG concluded a Memorandum of Understanding with China State Post on co-operation in international express delivery outside China, to study the development possibilities of the Chinese domestic market and on consultancy and training by TPG.


Co-operationship with Swiss Post


In November 1999 TPG and the Swiss Post established a strategic alliance in express and courier services. Both companies will form a joint venture with headquarters in Switzerland. TPG will gain access to the network of Swiss Post offices and the highly developed technology of the Swiss Post. Swiss Post will connect its customers to the worldwide network of TPG in the business areas of mail, express and logistics.



Co-operationship with Kintetsu World Express (Japan)


In December 1999 TPG and Kintetsu World Express established a strategic co-operation for the supply of integrated logistic solutions to customers in Europe and Asia. Kintetsu World Express Inc, headquartered in Tokyo, has over 5,000 employees working in 36 countries. The company has 123 warehouses, of which 50 are in Japan. TPG will benefit from Kintetsu's strong and longstanding customer base in Japan and Asia and its global expertise in logistics and distribution services. Kintetsu will benefit from TNT's Asian and European networks, its global presence and expertise in Express and Logistics.


Ground breaking joint venture agreement with The British Post Office and Singapore Post


On 9 March 2000, the CEOs of TPG, The Royal Mail and Singapore Post signed heads of agreement to start establishing a global joint venture in cross border mail. TPG has a 51 per cent stake holding in the new alliance, with The Royal Mail and Singapore Post each taking a 24.5 per cent stake. TPG and The Royal Mail provide the alliance with well-developed services throughout Europe, the Asia Pacific region and the Americas. Singapore Post has a state-of-the-art operation and established relationships throughout the Asia Pacific region.



Acquisition of US-based CTI LOGISTX further strengthens TPG's leadership in automotive Logistics


On 4 September 2000, TPG announced the acquisition of logistics provider CTI LOGISTX from rail and shipping company CSX Corporation, a stocklisted company in the US. As a result of this acquisition, TPG will further strengthened its leadership in automotive logistics and moved became the third largest logistics company worldwide. TPG paid USD 650 million for CTI LOGISTX, who had annual revenues of around EUR 500 million in 1999. CTI represents the largest acquisition TPG has undertaken since its listing in 1998. CTI is one of the leading third-party logistics providers in North America. CTI offers a strong sector fit, with TPG's brand TNT, in automotive, electronics and FMCG, and adds an excellent complementary customer base.


Peter Bakker new Chairman and CEO of TPG


On 1 October 2001, the Supervisory Board announced that Peter (M.P.) Bakker has been appointed as the new Chairman and CEO of Mail, Express and Logistics company TPG N.V.. Read the press release.


Royal PTT Post to take on a new name: Royal TPG Post


Since May 2002, Royal PTT Post, one of the two major brands of the mail, express and logistics company TPG, changed its name to Royal TPG Post. TPG was informed that Her Majesty the Queen had granted TPG's Mail division the right to continue to use the title ‘Royal’ with its new name. PTT Post was granted this title two years ago on the occasion of its 200th anniversary and many of it's employees find pride in this royal status.

The name TNT, a strong brand used worldwide for the express and logistic activities of TPG, will remain unchanged. In its visual form, the name TNT will however be given the endorsement ‘a company of TPG’.


TPG announces major joint venture in the Nordics


On 2 May 2002 TPG announced that it had acquired a 50% stake in DFDS Transport Logistics (registered as DSV Logistik Holding A/S), a subsidiary of DSV A/S, through its division TNT Logistics. The joint venture created a leading logistics player in the Nordic region and filled a strategic gap in TPG's European logistics activities. DSV A/S retained ownership of the remaining 50% of the company.

DFDS Transport Logistics employs some 700 staff and offers services in TNT Logistics' key strategic sectors of fast moving consumer goods, hi-tech and automotive. The company operates 40 multi-user warehouse sites totalling 300,000m2 in Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Norway. Its customers include major international and local companies in the Nordic region. Annual revenues in 2001 were approximately EUR 110 million. The joint venture has become one of the leading logistics players in the Nordic region and trades under the name TNT DFDS Transport Logistics.


TPG and the UN’s World Food Programme launch partnership


TPG and the United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP) launched a partnership on 19 December 2002. Known as ‘Moving the World’, TPG and WFP agreed the partnership, aimed at the single common goal of helping in the global fight against hunger, would last for at least five years. By becoming the largest corporate sponsor of the world's biggest humanitarian aid agency, TPG committed itself to making available its people, skills, systems and assets to support WFP.

With truly global operations and similar expertise in both transportation and logistics, WFP and TPG share the common values of speed, reliability and efficiency, as well as a 'results-based' culture. WFP also has the lowest overheads of any major UN organisation, which enables it to ensure that of every USD1 it receives, nearly 91 cents goes straight to purchasing and delivering food to the hungry.

As the largest single charitable commitment TPG has ever undertaken, the company hopes to tap the proven dedication of its three divisions and the enthusiasm of its 150,000 employees to take on the greatest logistical challenge of all: helping WFP to feed the world.

For more information on WFP, visit their website:

For more information on Moving the World, visit:



TPG expands German unaddressed mail network


Through its subsidiary TPG Post Holdings (Deutschland) GmbH in Germany, TPG acquired 100% of the shares in Werbeagentur Fischer GmbH, a Bergen, Bavarian-based unaddressed mail distribution company, on 24 January 2003. The acquisition gave TPG Post access to a round-based delivery network covering 300,000 households in south-eastern Germany. Fischer is the market leader in its area and in 2002 the company delivered over 132 million leaflets.

The acquisition further extended TPG Post’s coverage and density in the German unaddressed mail market. Building on TPG Post’s existing unaddressed activities in North-West Germany, Berlin and Baden-Württemberg, the acquisition established a stepping stone for further regional expansion.


China Post and TPG announce strategic partnership


The State Post Bureau of China (China Post) and TPG announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on 25 April 2003 that would provide the foundation for a broad strategic partnership. The partnership would build upon the successful partnership in the express business in China that the two organisations had entered into in 2000.

The MOU included an agreement to immediately establish a task force to explore potential areas of mutually beneficial co-operation in the areas of mail, express and logistics. In addition to expanding their co-operation and building closer ties in China, TPG and China Post would jointly explore potential areas of international growth.



TPG wins landmark logistics contract in China


Through its Chinese logistics joint venture ANJI-TNT Automotive Logistics Company, part of its TNT Logistics division, TPG signed the largest automotive inbound logistics contract awarded in China to date on 21 July 2003. The five-year contract between ANJI-TNT and Shanghai Volkswagen (SVW) was signed at the recent first anniversary celebration of the ANJI-TNT joint venture and is expected to have total revenues exceeding EUR 100 million.

Through its joint ventures in the country, the Volkswagen Group is the largest car manufacturer with a 44% share in the booming Chinese market. By winning this landmark contract against major competitors as part of a formal SVW tender process, ANJI-TNT further strengthened its position as the leading automotive logistics provider in China.


Expansion TNT Express European air hub


On 25 May TPG announced expansion of the TNT Express European air hub in Liege, Belgium.


Acquisition of Wilson Logistics Group


On 11 June TPG announces its plan to acquire global freight management company Wilson Logistics Group.


New head office in China


On 10 September the new TNT China head office in Shanghai is opened.


TPG buys own shares


On 29 September TPG agrees to repurchase 20.7 million TPG shares from the State of the Netherlands.


TPG won Henri Sijthoff prize 2003


On 12 October TPG won the Henri Sijthoff prize for 2003 annual report and financial website.


Own university for TNT


On 25 November TPG opens the TNT China University.


TPG to become TNT


On 14 January, TPG operates globally under the brand TNT for all its activities.
Operating under one brand will increase the recognition of the group worldwide and allow for more efficient communication on the various services.


TNT industry leader in Dow Jones Sustainability Index


On 9 September, In its first year of achieving a rank in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), TNT also achieved the highest score in its industry. The company entered the DJSI with an overall score of 75.


TNT links China to Europe with two Boeings 747


On 31 October, TNT announced that its Express Division will lease two B747-400ERF freighters to start up a new direct service between Europe and China in 2006.


Acquisition of Spanish domestic express distribution company TG+


On 6 December, TNT announced that its Express Division will acquire TG+, a leading Spanish domestic distribution company, subject to regulatory approval.

The proposed acquisition of TG+ will expand and strengthen TNT’s domestic express business and fuel its international express business in Spain, a strategic market in Europe with high growth potential. At the same time, TG+ will further drive growth of TNT's leading position in the premium express delivery market in Europe by providing better coverage in this key market.


TNT announces new Focus on Networks strategy


On 6 December, TNT announced a broad range of initiatives that will sharpen its strategic focus on its core competency of providing delivery services by managing transport networks like Mail, Express and Freight Management. Key resulting initiatives include exiting its logistics business and a € 1 billion share repurchase which commences today.

Tightens focus on higher growth, higher margin network-based businesses and adjusts its capital structure.

Key announcements include:

  • Refined strategy focuses on networks
  • Exit logistics business
  • Initiate € 1 billion share repurchase


TNT reaches agreement to sell its logistics division to Apollo Management


On 23 August, TNT announced that it has today signed a Sale and Purchase Agreement to sell its logistics division to affiliates of Apollo Management, L.P., a leading private equity firm with offices in New York, London and Los Angeles. The intended sale is part of TNT’s Focus strategy in which the company announced on December 6th last year that it would focus on its core competency of managing delivery networks.

The total transaction value is € 1,480 million on a cash and debt free basis, of which € 15 million will be received in the form of a 5% equity stake in the new company. TNT intends to return most of the net proceeds, which are estimated at between € 1.2 billion and € 1.3 billion, to its shareholders by way of a share repurchase program with a value of up to € 1 billion. The share repurchase program is expected to commence as soon as possible after completion.


TNT acquires Indian domestic express company Speedage


On 1 September, TNT announced the acquisition of ARC India Limited which operates under the trade name Speedage Express Cargo Services, one of the leading road express companies in India.

This acquisition is a key component of TNT's Focus on Networks strategy as announced in December 2005. Acquiring Speedage is in line with TNT’s strategic objective to become the leading provider of express deliveries in the emerging markets in Asia, specifically India. Combining Speedage’s strong domestic road network with TNT’s international and domestic networks will form a powerful platform for further expansion in the fast growing Indian express market.


TNT reaches final agreement for acquisition of Chinese domestic transportation company Hoau Group


On 29 September, TNT has signed the Equity Transfer Agreement with Hoau Group in Shanghai, People’s Republic of China, to acquire its nationwide road transport and freight business.

The signing of the agreement (comparable with a Sale and Purchase Agreement) follows the signing of a Letter of Intent, announced on 6 December 2005 and the Framework Agreement signed on 27 February 2006. Both parties expect to complete the transaction early 2007, subject to approval of the government of the People’s Republic of China.


TPG Post changes name to TNT Post


On 16 October, Royal TPG Post today officially changes its name to Royal TNT Post. The new name was first announced on 14 September 2005. Many measures have since been taken to prepare the company for the rebranding. To celebrate the transition from TPG Post to TNT Post, a pre-franked envelope will tomorrow be distributed door to door, enabling people to send a letter or card free of charge as a gift from TNT Post.


TNT completes sale of logistics division


On 4 November, TNT N.V. announces that it has completed the sale of the logistics division to affiliates of Apollo Management, L.P., a leading private equity firm with offices in New York, London and Los Angeles. With the completion of this transaction, Dave Kulik will become CEO of the new Company and therefore resigned from the TNT Board of Management. The now completed sale to Apollo was announced on 23 August 2006. On 29 September 2006 the shareholders’ meeting approved the transaction and on 24 October 2006 the European Commission granted clearance under the EU Merger Regulation. The total transaction value is € 1,480 million on a cash and debt free basis, of which approximately € 15 million has been received in the form of a 5% equity stake in the new company.


TNT sells Freight Management to Geodis


On 16 November, TNT N.V. today announced that it has signed a Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA) to sell its freight management business unit to French logistics service provider GEODIS SA. The transaction has an enterprise value of € 460 million, cash and debt free. TNT estimates cash proceeds of above € 400 million. The transaction will bring TNT a book gain of well over € 150 million and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2007 subject to regulatory clearances. Final amounts will be calculated on the basis of completion accounts.


TNT and the State of the Netherlands have reached agreement on the transfer of the Special Share


16 November, TNT and the State of the Netherlands have reached agreement on the transfer of the Special Share following the ruling by the European Court of Justice on 28 September 2006 that the Special Share contradicts EU law.


Boeing Delivers First 747-400ER Freighter to TNT, second to follow in 2007


20 December, Boeing [NYSE:BA], TNT and Guggenheim Aviation Partners celebrated the delivery today of both customers’ first 747-400ER Freighter.