PostNL provides customers with services in, to and from the Benelux. We are the designated universal service provider and we are involved in the export and import of mail and parcels. To understand our performance over 2022, we first describe our position and role in our value chain, the market developments around us, and how we engage with stakeholders, including shareholders. We then introduce the newly defined key material topics we focus on to create long-term value.
We play an important role in the logistic value chain, in, to and from the Benelux and beyond, using our wide range of delivery and related services to connect people, businesses and organisations. Our customers, consumers and partners in the value chain, our competitive position, as well as market developments all influence our business activities and the way we do business. For example, we want our Zero 2030 programme to motivate and inspire our people, our partners, our suppliers, and our customers to work together to make our entire value chain sustainable. At the same time, we are focusing on digital innovations. Digitalisation is helping us transform the way we do business and further develop our core activities to provide our customers with smart logistic solutions, improve our competitive position, and further advance customer interaction and experience.
PostNL is a full-service logistics and e-commerce provider, with a digital foundation supporting core physical business activities: collecting, sorting and delivering. We help senders place orders through our own channels, such as the PostNL app or website, and consumers find their preferred delivery option when they order online. As the designated provider of the universal service obligation (USO) in the Netherlands, we provide accessible and reliable postal services at affordable prices. We also provide consumers with multiple delivery options, and ensure e-tailers can offer these options using our data-driven and algorithm-based digital services. We are expanding and strengthening our role along the value chain, such as through our Spring operations and by providing fulfilment services and @Home solutions. These activities are supported and complemented by our range of digital capabilities and services.
“PostNL plays an important role in the logistic value chain”
The majority of supplier costs comprise transport-related services, followed by information and communication services, hiring and advice, human resources, and properties and facilities. Suppliers can be located and also sourced from within or outside the Benelux. As ESG is a license to operate, we include relevant criteria in our procurement practices on both environmental, social and governance-related topics. More information and our Procurement policy can be found here on our website.
PostNL works to strengthen the logistics value chain and improve our competitive position, for example by innovating and collaborating with partners. A key aspect of this is the retail network we operate in conjunction with partners across the Benelux, which enables us to efficiently carry out our services and makes it easier for customers to collect and return parcels. An important element in this is the ongoing expansion of the number of parcel lockers we operate, which we aim to expand to 1,500 across the Netherlands by 2024. Many of these can be found at retail partner locations, such as supermarkets or DIY stores. The lockers provide consumers with greater freedom to pick up and drop off parcels at a moment that is convenient for them.
We are increasingly running an integrator model that enhances and strengthens our existing physical services, which involves integrating operators' services into our own, while continuing to provide e-commerce companies across the Benelux with our end-to-end logistic services. This will enable us to grow the range of services we offer our customers, while managing our e-commerce-related networks and those of our partners as one. Digitalisation will play a key role in this development.
We are also working with partners to help drive their business, by using our distinctive experience and innovative business models. For example, we are helping our delivery partners further grow and advance their business operations and services. Additionally, we work with industry associations, public-private initiatives, trade unions and benchmarking institutes. In order to fully contribute to the strategic focus and the expertise of some of our bigger industry associations, PostNL currently holds seats on the Board of VNO-NCW-MKB Nederland, TLN, PostEurop and IPC. Our company is shaped by the relationship we have with customers, partners, consumers, suppliers and society. The infographic on the previous page visualises our position in the value chain and our connection with customers and consumers as we work to fulfil our ambition to be the favourite deliverer in the Benelux.