The package recognises the social and community value of post offices and the public service and commitment of Postmasters, particularly in recent years in the national response to Covid-19.
The pandemic has accelerated some of the headwinds facing the network, particularly in relation to the use of cash and digital substitution. An Post will continue to dynamically drive the transformation programme to support the renewal and development of the Post Office network and the expansion of new services built around 4 key growth pillars:
Community Banking for all – diversifying and growing financial services products for consumers and SMEs through An Post Money, Travel Money, partnerships with Bank of Ireland and AIB and a range of State Savings products
E-Commerce enablement – making online shopping easier with parcel and mail services including out-of-hours collections, returns, tracking, payments and redirections
One-Stop-Shop for Government Services – expanded range of local and central government services making it easier for citizens to interact with the State and to support the Government’s National Digital Strategy
Other new services - expanding the range of services like Leap, Green Hub, Western Union, Gifting
Debbie Byrne, MD of An Post Retail said “An Post welcomes today’s announcement of the time bound package of support for Postmasters to support a sustainable Post Office network in communities across the country. The pandemic has accelerated some of the headwinds facing the network. Today’s announcement creates space to accelerate the transformation and commercialisation of the network once again to ensure a relevant and commercially viable network delivering more services to citizens and small businesses.”
The future for the modern post office network is based around post offices offering more services to more customers and equipping Postmasters with the training and marketing tools to better commercialise their businesses to ensure the financial stability of the Post Office network.
Over the last three years, An Post has invested more than €60m to transform the Post Office network and build a sustainable business for Postmasters. Additionally, a Pandemic Relief fund of €8.5m was made available to support Postmasters and cushion the effects of lost revenues as they kept their doors open to serve communities during the Pandemic.
Our focus continues to be on building a strong and sustainable post office network, serving local communities and providing a worthwhile business for Postmasters.
Source: An Post