Canada Post says it has no interest in expanding into banking, insurance
© Guardian photo by Jim Day
Canada Post letter carrier Kelsie Boudreault says her biggest concern for customers is that they get their mail in a timely manner. One of several options Canada Post is examining in order to cut costs is to reduce speed of delivery.
A new ad campaign from Canada Post’s union is calling for the Crown corporation to add things like banking and insurance to its services in order to maintain what it already offers.
Chris Clay, president of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers’ local in Charlottetown, said post offices around the world have looked at different ways to make money and adding services would strengthen Canada Post’s brand.
“It would give more faith in the company that people don’t seem to have right now,” he said.
The Charlottetown local plans to run newspaper ads for the next three weeks in an effort to raise support for a public review of the Canadian Postal Service Charter, which sets out the government’s expectations for Canada Post’s services.
In the ad, CUPW says cutting services isn’t Canada Post’s only option and it could add financial services like bill payments, insurance and banking.
It all came after Canada Post announced last month it lost $104 million during the last quarter as its mail volume declined.
Clay said Canada Post has already made changes to its services in P.E.I., including to mail sorting that moved to Halifax.
“I guarantee there’s been an impact,” he said.
Along with the ads, the union is asking people to get postcards available through its national office that call for a public review of the postal charter.
But while the union is calling for more services, Canada Post spokesman Jon Hamilton says things like banking aren’t part of the company’s core business.
Hamilton said Canada Post looked at getting into banking, but the Canadian market is well served and there are already a lot of choices.
“There’s no gap for someone like us to come in and fill,” he said.
For Canada Post to get into other services like banking or insurance, they would have to be exceptionally profitable, do extremely well and be competitive, Hamilton said.
“When you branch out from what you are known for and do really well people have to want to come to them for that additional service.
“If that additional service is far removed from what you do today then you’ve got a real uphill climb.”
Hamilton said that with mail business in decline, Canada Post has to make changes to ensure it can provide that service and grow where it can, which includes parcel delivery.
“We’re good at delivering stuff,” he said.