Fedex vs. Ups

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THE BATTLE FOR VALUE, 2004:

FEDEX CORP. VS. UNITED PARCEL SERVICE, INC.

Executive Summary:

As the U.S. package delivery business segment matured, International segment became the battle ground for the two package delivery giants – FedEx and UPS. FedEx is considered to be the innovative, entrepreneurial, inventor of customer logistical management, and an operational leader. UPS, on the other hand, is considered to be big, bureaucratic, and industry follower, although UPS is shedding this negative image with newer innovations.

FedEx Corp. started in 1971, by the end of 2003; it had nearly $15.4 billion in assets, net income of $830 million on revenues of about $22.5 billion and shipped more than 5.4 million packages daily.
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Review the Fixed asset turnover and Total asset turnover for FedEx and UPS for the period 1992-1994, it is observed that UPS is utilizing its assets better during this period – see graph below.
[pic]
Although by itself this ratio number can be misleading, since companies with lower margins can have higher asset turnover rations. In order to understand the real impact of asset turnover ratio we need to combine with margin ratio and then determine if it’s pricing strategy by UPS that is generating this high ratio or in fact UPS is much more efficient in using its assets than FedEx. Looking at the numbers for this period for both companies using Exhibits 2&3, we observed that UPS has far better Net profit margins compared [pic] to FedEx’s, that points to high asset turnover due to its pricing strategy. As we see in the above graph, UPS Asset ratios are declining while FedEx assets ratios are improving and correspondingly FedEx-RONA is also improving though lacking behind UPS’s RONA ratio even though FedEx has greatly improved their asset turnover ratios, the Net Profit margins are still well below UPS (see Net Profit Margin graph above). Does this mean UPS is creating more value than FedEx as shown by RONA graph? We need more concrete data to answer this question. Although RONA has a strong virtue of usage, as compared to traditional methods for measuring

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