Regional Director: Michael Kennedy
Turnover: £170m (Belfast Telegraph estimate)
Pre-tax profit: n/a
Latest results show that across the UK the Royal Mail Group made a £39 million operating profit in 2010/11 after modernisation costs. Total revenues declined to £9.2 billion, mainly because of a 4% fall in core mail volumes. The letters business lost just over £2million a week, the decline driven again mainly by a fall in mail volumes, which have fallen by 25% since 2006.
Royal Mail continued to deliver much-needed cost savings through modernisation. In Northern Ireland the company has invested some £12 million in new sorting automation at the Northern Ireland Mail Centre and in new and more modern delivery kit, such as high-capacity delivery trolleys, for delivery postmen.
The Postal Services Act was passed in June 2011, paving the way for significant change at the Royal Mail Group. The Act provides a way forward for the company’s challenging financial position. It will help resolve the company’s crippling pension deficit, help attract much-needed external private capital and start the process of changing the regulatory framework. At the same time the Act protects the Universal Service.
Royal Mail is currently awaiting the outcome of Ofcom’s consultation on its proposals for future regulation of UK postal services.
In November 2011 the Government announced a £1.34 billion funding package for Post Office Ltd to safeguard and modernise the network. The Government also made a commitment to a programme of no further Post Office closures.
The challenge for the Post Office is similar to Royal Mail. It must find new revenue streams and manage costs down as traditional services decline. The Post Office is also piloting new ways of delivering services. The Post Office ‘local’ concept is a simple way of providing post office services in convenience-type stores. Combining both the Post Office and the retail service benefits the retailer by increasing footfall and benefits customers by offering extended opening hours offer. Six Post Office ‘Locals’ are currently being piloted in Northern Ireland, including in Upperlands (Maghera) and New Buildings (Londonderry).
Northern Ireland Mail Centre
Tel: 08457 950 950