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Tuesday, 26 June, 2001, 16:51 GMT 17:51 UK
Post office jobs warning
Consignia website
Consignia's results are below target
Consignia has reported disappointing profits and warned that it may have to cut jobs because of continued strike action.

The UK post office, which recently rebranded itself as Consignia, also said that rail delays had a "terrible toll" on mail deliveries and profits.

The company reported post-tax profits of 66m, which were 88m below a target agreed with the government.

"Last year's results were disappointing and the level of profit is insufficient to provide a satisfactory return to our shareholder," said Consignia chairman Neville Bain.

Consignia executives also warned that unless industrial relations improved, jobs could be lost.

Days lost

About 62,000 days were lost to strikes, which has cost Consignia tens of millions of pounds.

Posting a letter
Recent strikes by postal workers could lead to job losses
More damaging is the fact that some customers have been forced to switch to other delivery firms.

"We have to stabilise industrial relations," said chief executive John Roberts, adding that strikes were playing into the hands of competitors.

"It is important that our people understand that if we are not able to get it under control, there will be an impact on jobs."

Mr Roberts also said that the "self-inflicted" damage was coming at a time of greater competition for the company.

Turnover

The company's turnover grew by 7.9% to 8.1bn during the last financial year after mail volumes grew by 2.7%.

It had budgeted for a growth in volume of 3.4% and blamed the shortfall on the internet, e-mails and mobile phones.

Internal managers are unhappy with the performance of the rail network and have launched a review into lessening the company's reliance on trains.

Consignia is also seeking 6m in compensation for the delays following the Hatfield train crash.

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See also:

31 May 01 | Business
Consignia considers outsourcing deal
25 May 01 | Wales
Postal workers call off strike
24 May 01 | Business
Q&A: Why Royal Mail is in trouble
26 Mar 01 | Business
Q&A: Letter delivery free-for-all
22 Dec 00 | Business
Price cut 'threatens post offices'
09 Jan 01 | Business
UK Post Office name change
20 Jul 00 | UK Politics
Post Office 'pressured' by change
28 Jan 00 | UK Politics
Post Office to become plc
28 Jan 00 | e-cyclopedia
Renaming: Sleight of brand?
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