Financial Statements 1980s

1989 Financial Statement
Year ended 31 December 1989
Turnover IR£197.0m €250.1m
Profit/(Loss) after tax IR£(2.7)m €(3.4)m
Expenditure on Fixed Assets IR£12.7m €16.1m

The sixth annual report of An Post revealed the first loss since 1985 and pointed out that the Company was budgeting for a bigger loss in 1990. Costs were too high and were increasing faster than revenues.

The report made clear that the ‘Partnership for Progress’ productivity agreement was not self-financing and said that An Post could no longer postpone the radical remedial action required to put the business back on a solid long term footing.

An Post would announce its plans to deal with these issues, as soon as possible. These plans would be designed to assure the future of An Post and all who work in it. Staff and managers at all levels would have to be fully involved in the change and recovery process.

The report welcomed the decision of the Government to award An Post the franchise for operating the Prize Bonds Scheme in a joint venture arrangement with the Foreign Exchange Company of Ireland.

1988 Financial Statement
Year ended 31 December 1988
Turnover IR£190.2m €241.5mm
Profit/(Loss) after tax IR£0.6m €0.8m
Expenditure on Fixed Assets IR£8.4m €10.7m

The fifth annual report of An Post said that three issues had dominated the year: the quality of letter service, productivity and the parcels service. The year had seen a worrying deterioration in the quality of service in the letters area with an MRBI survey indicating that the next day delivery rate was down to 85%.

It was disappointing that postal charges would remain at 1986 levels for a further year.
An Post was now ranked sixth in the league of the European postal rates.

Work which began in 1987 on “Partnership for Progress” was continued last year but not without difficulties. When revised working arrangements were belatedly implemented in the Central Sorting Office in September, it became clear that many fundamental issues remained to be tackled.

Agreement had been reached on the plan to revitalise and restructure the parcels service. In addition to the move from the CSO to new premises on the Naas Road, the plan also envisaged the establishment of parcels depots at Portlaoise, Athlone and Cork.

1987 Financial Statement
Year ended 31 December 1987
Turnover IR£194.8m €247.3m
Profit/(Loss) after tax IR£1.6m €2.0m
Expenditure on Fixed Assets IR£8.7m €11.0m

The fourth annual report of An Post noted that there had been a steady improvement in the financial health of the Company since its formation in 1984 without any dramatic improvement in the profitability of the Company’s business operations. All must do their utmost to reduce costs.

It was pointed out that a formidable barrier to the realisation of An Post’s full potential had been the bureaucratic practices which the Company inherited. Post Office structures had remained virtually unchanged since the foundation of the State. New organisational arrangements put in place over the year provided for a significant degree of decentralisation of authority and responsibility.

The success of the National Lottery during 1987 has been a tremendous boost but implementation of the “Partnership for Progress” Agreement caused some teething problems for mails operations, while it was a great cause of concern that it had not been possible to implement fully the “Partnership for Progress” Agreement with the P.T.W.U. in the Dublin area.

New products introduced during the year included “Postloan”; Sterling Drafts; “Keep in Touch” postcards; “Kiddy Colour Cards” and “Cassette Post.” The Minister for Communications was considering the possible transfer of the TV Licence fee collection agency to RTE.

1986 Financial Statement
Year ended 31 December 1986
Turnover IR£183.6m €233.1m
Profit/(Loss) after tax IR£0.7m €0.9m
Expenditure on Fixed Assets IR£5.8m €7.4m

The third annual report of An Post hailed an historic return to profit but warned that it had to be seen against the background of major losses up to recent years -IR£11m (€14m) million on average each year from 1978 to 1982 - and a continuing deep recession in the economy generally.

During 1986 quality of service was maintained with 90% of letters delivered on the next working day after posting. Quality of service for parcels recorded that 80% received next day delivery. It was pointed out that competition in the parcel business is very tough and parcel traffic continued to fall during the year. Further major changes are needed if the parcel business is to become viable again.

The report said that letter prices were already high by world standards and that this inhibited the Company’s growth. An Post was committed to the development of the Postaim and Publicity Post services as a means of generating essential sources of new revenues.

A plan to develop the banking business had been submitted to the Government. The proposal to create a modern, restructured Post Office Savings Bank would require State capital investment, as An Post was not in a position to fund it from its own resources.

Special pay claims based on productivity would have to be self-financing, the report added.

1985 Financial Statement
Year ended 31 December 1985
Turnover IR£167.2m €212.3m
Profit/(Loss) after tax IR£(1.8)m €(2.3)m
Expenditure on Fixed Assets IR£7.0m €8.9m

The second annual report of An Post said that during 1985 the quality of services continued to improve. An Post was now looking very closely at mail mechanisation and postal coding systems while parcel handling in the Central Sorting Office had been reorganised to give next-day delivery to almost all internal parcels. It was pointed out however that the parcel service was losing several millions and major improvements in efficiency and cost reductions were required.

After two years of losses, a break-even result was targeted for 1986. The Board of An Post was disappointed by the Government decision not to subvert its losses during the five year plan to viability. IR£4m (€5.1m) capital investment had been received from the State but no further capital investment was to be forthcoming. The Board said this under financing and lack of investment in An Post will inevitably mean price increases.

Preparations for a public electronic mail service had been completed and An Post continued to study the possibility of radically extending its banking services. Full computerisation of TV Licence details was scheduled for completion in 1986.

Lack of staff co-operation with Publicity Post hinders its marketing as a nationwide service.

Highlights: -
  • An Post had been chosen by the Government to run the National Lottery-the operation of which would commence in 1987.
  • First employee director elections were held and five employees appointed to the Board.
  • A pilot scheme for the delivery to roadside letterboxes was introduced in four areas.
  • First ever “Love” stamps launched.
  • Tariffs were revised in February 1985 although the basic postage rates for standard sized mail remained unchanged.
1984 Financial Statement
Year ended 31 December 1984
Turnover IR£150.0m €190.5m
Profit/(Loss) after tax IR£(0.4)m €(0.5)m
Expenditure on Fixed Assets IR£3.4m €4.3m

The first annual report pointed out that the loss-making outcome for the year included a
Government subvention of IR£5m (€6.3m). It also said that as a postal service An Post had a minimum infrastructure that could not be reduced; widespread retrenchment was not realistic, nor were sharply increased prices. Volume growth was seen as the key to future success.

During the year, new product initiatives took place around the Penny Post (1 January, 1984), St. Patrick’s Day Cards, the bonus stamp-book offer, reduced price Christmas stamps, Postphoto and Postaim.

In addition, separate divisions were established within the Company to deal with mails (letters and parcels) and banking / retail. Proposals were put to the ESB and to Dublin Gas for their bill payment business.

Implementation of a computerised system for processing Television Licences commenced. Proposals were formulated for the running of the National Lottery and new Philatelic Advisory and Stamp Design Committees were established.

The Market Research Bureau of Ireland (MRBI) was commissioned to survey the quality of service. The results showed that 91.4% of full rate, correctly addressed letters were delivered on the next working day.

The National Plan - “Building and Reality” - proposes to eliminate subvention of losses during the transition to viability and to restrict Government capital investment in An Post to IR£7m (€8.9m) compared with the IR£50m (€63.5m) previously anticipated.

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