Join LPOGroup - best business decision you can make
Licensed Post Offices (LPOs) are commercial business ventures, taken up by Australians, with a desire to run their own small businesses. Most Licensees have reasonable expectations, for a sound commercial return, in partnership with a government business enterprise. We are a multibillion-dollar industry, and collectively Licensees have personally invested billions of dollars into the LPO network. LPOG is committed to ensuring that Licensees always have professional or accredited advocates, who can represent our best interests in our dealings with Australia Post, always.
In 2012, LPOG was established as a franchisees association to raise the collective voices of many very worried, and financially stressed Licensees, and to bring about change to the payment arrangements, and the terms and conditions for LPOs.
Australia Post has traditionally focused on ensuring the best possible financial outcomes, primarily for Australia Post. Licensees have for decades now, often just been left with the crumbs from the table, due to lack of successful representation for Licensees, and that was, and is not, sustainable for any long-term future. It is to the detriment of early Licensees that the imbalance in the relationship was not addressed much sooner.
It has been acknowledged that, historically, Licensees have suffered significant underpayments, when compared with standard commercial measures like the CPI. This needed to be addressed, corrected, and managed with a more commercial approach for the future viability, and sustainability, of the LPO network.
By identifying our problems, LPOG Members successfully ventilated many of the issues across the LPO network & communicated those issues to the right people. Our push for a Senate Inquiry was made possible through passionate Licensees, who were not prepared to allow their businesses to perish through no fault of their own. It took great courage from many of our foundation members to speak of their financial issues with politicians, media, public forums and eventually, Australia Post’s senior management.
In 2014, the Senate Committee handed down a strong set of recommendations to drive change for the LPO network. Since 2014, we have experience significant changes in the franchise relationship between Australia Post and the LPO network, with most changes resulting in much improved outcomes for all stake holders.
In 2018, we saw a milestone achieved in our industry, with agreement by Australia Post to decouple many of our payment increases from the BPR (basic postage rate) increase. The BPR is not a commercial instrument and that coupling in the early 1990s left the LPO payment scheme in dire straits over the years, most especially when the BPR was purposefully stagnated for commercial reasons by Australia Post, for almost 11 years.
Once that decoupling milestone was achieved, the path to payment reform was set. Not to say it was an easy path, and that it has been achieved wholeheartedly, but stage 1 of payment reform has seen many of our base payments transition more towards the growing parcels side of the business, rather than continue to be linked to the declining letters side of the business. This will effectively link our payments to the growth side of the business in the foreseeable future. There is still much work to be done to provide a sound commercial based payment scheme, with the ability to suit a wide range of dynamic LPOs, in a wide range of different settings. However, the search to meet those requirements has begun, and for that we have the current CEO, Christine Holgate, and her executive team who really believe the LPO network is vital to the success of the whole of the business, and want to see Licensees financially rewarded for the service they provide for Australia Post, and our communities.
LPOG can achieve even more with your support and experience. We must overcome the hurdles that have isolated LPOs, and encumbered remuneration growth. We are truly looking forward to building a sustainable business model for LPOs and a constructive, consultative relationship with Australia Post.
Please consider your future in the LPO industry. If you wish to protect your investment, both short term and long term, becoming an LPOG Member could be the best business decision you will make. The louder the call for change, the sooner it will be cemented into our agreements – united we can help get this done. Together, with Australia Post, we can restore the LPO business model, to once more, become the blue chip, small business investment that it was known for in past decades.
We are on a winner finally, with a very bright future up ahead. Please join us.