UK 80 parcels per person say Pitney Bowes

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Pitney Bowes have today released the new Parcel Shipping Index featuring 2021 data from 13 major markets around the world. The Index reveals China generated 108 billion parcels in 2021, making it the first country to exceed 100 billion parcels within one year, as forecast in last year’s report. The UK generated 80 parcels per person – the highest of all countries in the Index.

Global parcel volume reached 159 billion in 2021 equating to 5000 parcels per second. Total carrier revenue reached $491.5 billion. The Index estimates parcel volume could reach 216 billion or as high as 300 billion by 2027, with a 5.5% – 11.5% CAGR from 2022-2027.

The seventh edition of the Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index finds parcel volume increased across all regions in 2021. China’s growth in parcel volume represents a milestone for the shipping industry. Each day, China ships 300 million parcels, which is more than the smallest market in the Index – Sweden – ships in a year. Across the Index, parcels shipped per capita averaged 41. Parcel volume per household is a new measure included in this year’s Index. An average of 137 parcels were shipped per household across all countries, with China shipping the most at 218.

All countries reported double digital carrier revenue growth except Japan. The US once again generated the highest carrier revenue, at $188 billion. France generated the highest revenue per parcel at $9.63. The average revenue per parcel was $3.

Key UK parcel volume, revenue and market share and revenue

  • Per capita, the UK generated 80 parcels per person in 2021 – the highest of all 13 countries in the Index, and an increase from 74 in 2020
  • 5.4 billion parcels were generated in the UK in 2021, up 9 percent from 5 billion in 2020
  • 171 parcels were generated every second, equating to around 15 million parcels per day 
  • Around 192 parcels were shipped per household
  • All major carriers in the UK reported parcel revenue growth in 2021
  • Royal Mail generated the highest revenue of all major carriers at $6.88 billion, an increase of 13 percent year-over-year
  • Amazon Logistics followed Royal Mail in revenue terms reaching $3.12 billion in 2021
  • Yodel saw the highest year-over-year revenue increase of 33 percent to $1.36 billion, up from $1.03 billion the previous year
  • Amazon Logistics generated the highest CAGR in revenue growth at 44% during 2015-2021
  • UPS grew 27% year-over-year to $2.15 billion, up from $1.69 billion
  • Hermes revenue growth dropped from 161 percent in 2020, to 20 percent in 2021. Revenues reached $2.98 billion

Key findings from the latest Parcel Shipping Index

  • Parcel volume reached 159 billion in 2021, up 21 percent from 131.2 billion in 2020
    • 5000 parcels shipped per second compared to 4160 in 2020
    • Parcel revenue reached $491.5 billion, up 14% from $429.5 billion in 2020
    • Highest CAGR 2015-21 for parcel volume was generated by China at 32 percent followed by Brazil at 20 percent
    • Highest CAGR 2015-21 for parcel revenue was generated by China at 26 percent followed by India at 15 percent
    • China remains the largest market in terms of parcel volume, reaching 108 billion and generated the highest year-over-year parcel growth in the Index, up 30 percent from 83 billion in 2020
    • United States remained the market with the highest carrier revenue, reaching $188 billion, an increase of 16 percent year over year
  • India generated the highest carrier revenue growth, bouncing back following a decline in 2020. In 2021 India generated a 32% year-over-year increase in parcel revenue reaching $5.25 billion
  • United Kingdom generated 80 parcels per person, the highest parcel per person of all 13 countries in the Index

2021 was a pivotal time for the parcel shipping industry as it experienced the aftershocks of 2020 and faced new challenges. It’s incredible to see carriers generating strong revenue growth despite the headwinds. Now in its seventh year, no other shipping report comes close to the accuracy, credibility and authority of the Parcel Shipping Index, and although our analysts forecast China would exceed 100 billion parcels in 2021, it’s still an extraordinary milestone for the shipping industry that we’re excited to reveal.

– Jason Dies, EVP and President, Sending Technology Solutions, Pitney Bowes

The Pitney Bowes Parcel Shipping Index measures volume and spend for business-to-business, business-to-consumer, consumer-to-business and consumer-consigned shipments with weight up to 31.5 kg (70 lbs.) in 13 major markets, representing 3.8 billion people in the U.S., Canada, Brazil, Germany, UK, France, Italy, Norway, Sweden, China, Japan, Australia and India. Based on proprietary and published data, the Index has become a valued industry benchmark and a reliable source of accurate forecasting since the inaugural report in 2016.

For detailed insights by region, download the eBook, where you can view the video, infographic and map.

The Shipping Index is an example of research Pitney Bowes conducts annually to provide insight and forecasts on the shipping and logistics industry. You can meet the Pitney Bowes team at ChannelX World on the 13th of October to discuss their findings and services.


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