Born from the trading DNA of Rogers and Company Limited, Velogic evolved over the years from the freight forwarding arm of the Rogers Group in 1964 to a leading ‘One-Stop-Shop’ offer of logistics services. By gradually adding new services to its offering, the Company has consistently created value through organic growth, vertical integration, acquisitions, and an efficient go-to-market approach. Led from Mauritius, the entrepreneurial acumen of the Velogic team has gradually enabled the creation of a strong network of offices and agents in key markets worldwide to respond to growing and more complex demands from clients.
Leveraging on its diverse skill sets and key competitive advantages honed over almost 60 years of operations, Velogic has a clear growth strategy driven by international expansion. In Mauritius, further growth will only be achieved when the port is transformed into a regional maritime hub, as announced by the government for a few years.
During these challenging past years, the team has remained agile, offering solutions for its clients in a challenging environment. The Company has created innovative solutions during the pandemic crisis, targeted new markets and onboarded new clients. Concerted and critical decisions across the supply chain helped improve our activities’ performance and sustainability, consolidating the leading position of Velogic as a resourceful player in the Indian Ocean.
In December 2021, the Company was listed on the Development & Enterprise Market of the Stock Exchange of Mauritius Ltd, making Velogic the only pure logistics player available to investors on the local stock exchange. It is a significant milestone in the Company’s development journey as it enhances the Company’s profile towards the broader investment community, builds stakeholders’ confidence and creates a platform to finance the international growth of the Company. This first Integrated Annual Report of the Company that you hold today in your hands is another outcome of the listing of the Company and another important milestone achieved by Velogic in terms of Governance and Reporting.
As Velogic continues to build its track record, it aims to drive growth and improve the liquidity of the Company’s shares for its shareholders. Within its very first year of listing, the Company has delivered a commendable performance beyond the forecasts shared with investors before listing, boosted by the “Resilience in Motion” thrust: Velogic’s performance improved with a 25% increase in sales to MUR 4.6 billion (2021: MUR 3.7 billion). Profit after tax surged by 28% to MUR 194 million (2021: MUR 151 million), while Profit for the year inclusive of gains realised on the sale of 70% of our stakes in the French operations, amounted to MUR 216 million.
The new configuration of the French office, where we have decided to remain a 30% minority shareholder, allows us to focus our growth within fast-growing markets whilst maintaining the solidity of our commercial presence in France.
With this solid performance backdrop, the Velogic team has demonstrated its resilience and has provided the means for the Company to implement its growth strategies in Kenya, Madagascar, and India. Velogic has established a concrete platform from which to grow in Kenya, a country considered as one of East Africa’s key business and logistic hubs. With its longstanding presence in Madagascar, the Company tends to benefit from the continued growth of the apparel manufacturing base and the implementation of numerous industrial and mining initiatives. Started as a 50% partnership in 2006, we now own 100% of some ten offices across India, placing Velogic as the primary trade enabler between Mauritius and the Great Peninsula. We have also grown our trade between India and other countries.
Yet, volatility and uncertainties in the market remain. Global trade and movements are still reeling from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Russia-Ukraine conflict continues to fuel food and energy inflation across the world. At the same time, the effects of climate change on global food production are starting to become apparent. If we have learned anything in the past couple of years, it is that we should continue to expect the unexpected, as prospects of a strong and sustained recovery in our main markets remain uncertain.
The Rogers Group, including Velogic, has embarked on the journey towards sustainability. Operating within the transport industry, which is a business environment with a sizeable carbon footprint and engaging with its various stakeholders, Velogic will reach ambitious targets only through future trade- offs between Planet, People, and Prosperity. So far, Velogic is making good progress towards greener logistics. Its key focus areas are waste recycling, water efficiency, energy efficiency and carbon footprint reduction. Initial results are encouraging, and as for many other industries, the road towards decarbonisation remains challenging. The sustainability KPIs adopted by Velogic are described in detail in the Natural capital section of the Integrated Annual Report on page 48.
The Board of Velogic has welcomed Belinda Wong-Vacher, Vincent Barbier, Radhakrishna Chellapermal and Alvin Jeeawock as new Directors during the financial year 2022. We are confident that their expertise, skills, and experience will benefit the Company.
I want to extend the Board’s appreciation to Vishal Nunkoo, the Chief Executive Officer of Velogic, for his infallible leadership during these testing times. Vishal and his team have reaped the benefits of years of navigation which have prepared Velogic to better surf uncharted waters. I also seize this opportunity to thank all our employees for their engagement and commitment to driving the “Resilience in Motion” theme implemented by Velogic.
From now on, we will remain attentive to the needs of our clients, and our growth focus will be on those territories where we can seize new opportunities. I thank all our shareholders and clients for their trust and commit to staying ahead of evolving trends to create sustainable value for all our stakeholders.