The Post Office has announced its financial results for 2017/18, which show continued progress in its turnaround. In 2016/2017 the Post Office recorded a profit £13m, its first profit for 16 years – this year’s results reveal an increase of £22m to £35m.
The results show that the Post Office has increased its trading turnover by £4m, from £957m to £961m.
Customer spend and satisfaction ratings have grown in Financial Services and Telecoms, and in the extremely competitive Mails market. The Post Office continues to lead the market in Travel Money and its Banking Services business is thriving.
During 2017/18 more than 125 million cash withdrawals were made from UK bank accounts at local Post Office branches and cash deposits grew by an impressive 28% – due largely to the uplift in small business customers using these services.
By the end of March 2018, it had transformed more than 7,500 of its over 11,500 branches. It is also opening new branches where there is unmet demand, including a new 24 hour branch in New Oxford Street. Post Office branches remain in communities where banks no longer exist, with more than with 99% of people living within three miles of a branch.
Paula Vennells, Chief Executive of the Post Office, said: “The Post Office is commercial organisation with a strong social purpose. Millions of people and businesses rely on our services, especially as more and more banking customers are turning to our branches to undertake everyday banking services. We have made good progress in our transformation and there is more to do.
“We have set ourselves a target of £100m trading profit within the next three years. We need to be able to invest in the future and respond effectively to the challenges which remain.
“As an inclusive, diverse and multicultural workforce, we are winning over a new generation of digitally literate customers, whilst ensuring we cater to those who already rely on us, day in, day out. But we need to speed up how we do business, and reduce our costs further, so we can work more efficiently to meet the demands of every single one of our customers– whether they require physical or digital services.
“By working together, we will accelerate our rate of change to ensure the Post Office matters even more tomorrow than it does today.”
The progress made by the Post Office in transforming the business was recognised during the year by the Government’s further investment in the Post Office. In December 2017, the Government announced £370m of investment to continue to grow and modernise the Post Office network.
The funding, which runs up to 2021, includes investment for the Post Office’s ongoing transformation of up to £210m between the financial years 2018/19 and 2020/21, as well as a further £160m to support those branches serving smaller, often rural, remote or urban deprived communities.