Grant Thornton finds the Post Office Network is an untapped resource capable of significant growth

A new independent report by Grant Thornton, commissioned by the Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU), recommends that the Government invest with urgency in the Post Office Network, stating that the Post Office Network is capable of significant growth and offers ways to support government policy and to promote efficiencies within Government. The FULL REPORT can be read here. The report points to a €12 million funding gap which needs to be met by government investment if the network is to thrive and grow. This funding gap has been reduced by €5 million (previously estimated at €17 million in a 2020 Grant Thornton Report) through the efforts of postmasters investing in their […]

Postmasters to discuss ballot on Industrial Action

Postmasters are to hold an emergency meeting to consider a ballot on Industrial Action, including to withdraw support for changes to Postal Money Order and Foreign Exchange services. The potential action comes amid mounting frustration with An Post and Government, as Postmasters say morale is low and meaningful engagement is needed to resolve a range of issues. The national Members’ Meeting has been called for next Monday (March 28), and the Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU) Executive has motioned discussion of a ballot on Industrial Action. IPU General Secretary Ned O’Hara said the Postal Order and Foreign Exchange issues are not the whole problem, but a tipping point among multiple issues […]

Postmasters call for ‘long-term funding solution’ for Post Offices

Irish Postmasters’ Union Annual Conference 2021 Government Report should include fixed State payment for Post Offices Postmasters have called for an upcoming Government Report to include a long-term funding solution for the Post Office Network, in advance of their Annual Conference this weekend. The Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU) said the Network should be secured through a retainer type fixed Government payment, as recommended by business advisors Grant Thornton. A report by the Government’s Interdepartmental Group for the Delivery of Offline Services is imminent and expected to address many of the issues faced by the Post Office Network. On the eve of the Union’s 2021 Annual Conference General Secretary Ned O’Hara […]

Postmasters call crisis meetings to discuss work stoppages as unrestrained closures imminent 

Bank of Ireland deal with Post Offices now in jeopardy Postmasters today warned that Government needs to act urgently to maintain the Post Office Network, or face ‘unrestrained closures’ from July. Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU) General Secretary Ned O’Hara said that a Government financial intervention must be implemented within weeks, or the Network as we know it will collapse. The IPU has written to its members to attend emergency local meetings during June to discuss all options, including a members’ ballot on a work stoppage. There are currently 875 Postmaster and 45 An Post operated Post Offices in the country. Mr O’Hara said: “Postmaster operated Offices face a major challenge from July […]

Banking services in further jeopardy unless Government keeps Post Offices open

Postmasters today warned that Government needs to act quickly and decisively to keep Post Offices open, or put access to local banking at further risk. Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU) General Secretary Ned O’Hara said that a Government financial intervention must be in place by this June to keep Post Offices open. “The question is who will provide financial services to communities, such as those where Bank of Ireland branches are to close, if Post Offices do not get Government support in time?” Mr. O’Hara said COVID-19 has made the viability of the hundreds of Post Offices even more challenging – and this would be further compounded by a significant reduction […]

Government solution for Post Offices to maintain vital services for Communities

Postmasters today said that Government plans to strengthen the delivery of essential services ‘offline’, provides a critical opportunity to secure the Post Office Network. Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU) General Secretary Ned O’Hara said that the Network is ideally placed to ensure that people have the option of person-to-person ’offline’ access to vital services. “The IPU supports expanding Government services delivered through the Network and to provide this Postmasters should receive an annual Government retainer payment. This will ensure an infrastructure for communities to access services – and keep hundreds of struggling Post Offices open. “Services which can be provided offline include motor tax, licences, renewals, registrations, identity verification, community information, IT […]

Postmasters call for clarity on Government response to support for Post Office Network

Post Office Network critical for local business during and after COVID-19 Postmasters have called for clarity on the future of hundreds of Post Offices – and what action Government will take to support the Network. Speaking at the Irish Postmasters’ Union AGM this weekend (by virtual meeting), General Secretary Ned O’Hara said an ‘inject and spend’ approach to the economy was central to Budget  2021. He said Post Offices provide a core asset of national infrastructure through which to support local businesses and economies during and after the COVID-19 pandemic – and Government must take action to secure this. A report commissioned by business advisors Grant Thornton, published in September, […]

Postmasters welcome return to weekly payment of social welfare

SOCIAL WELFARE PAYMENTS TO RETURN TO WEEKLY  Postmasters to seek Government response to Post Offices report Postmasters today welcomed a Government decision to return to weekly collection of all social welfare payments at Post Offices.  The Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU) has received confirmation from the Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys that the Department is set to announce the change this week.  The change, which is due to come into effect in late October / early November, will give all Social Welfare recipients the choice to collect any payment either weekly or every two weeks at their Post Office. Customers can clarify any changes to their collection details with their local […]

Grant Thornton recommends €17m annual Government support for Post Office Network 

Report says Post Office Network continues to return strong economic and social value ‘Collapse of Post Office Network’ if State support not introduced urgently  An annual Public Service Obligation (PSO) for the Post Office Network of €17m has been recommended in an independent review by business advisors Grant Thornton. READ the full Grant Thornton Report. The report Review of the economic contribution and financial sustainability of the Irish Post Office Network, commissioned by the Irish Postmasters’ Union (IPU), recommends that the Government invest with urgency in the Post Office Network, as it provides a multi-fold economic and social return to communities, far in excess of the PSO requirement. The report […]

Transactions down 25% in Post Offices

COVID-19 impact on Post Offices affecting local economies Weekly collection needs to be offered for all welfare payments Transactions in Post Offices are estimated to be down by 25% – heightening serious viability challenges facing the Network. Postmasters today warned that coronavirus is having a very serious negative impact on transactions in Post Offices, and by extension cash spending in local economies. The Irish Postmasters’ Union today called for people to be offered the choice to collect social welfare payments either weekly or every two weeks. A comparison of transactions for the month of August comparing 2020 with 2019 by Postmasters estimated that Post Office business was down by 25%. As […]