Postal News from July 2004
July 31, 2004 -- The agenda for the August 3-5 meeting of the Postmaster General's Mailers Technical Advisory Committee has been posted on this site.
July 31, 2004 -- The Wall Street Journal has reported that "Federal revenues appear to be bouncing back after a puzzling multi-year tumble, allowing the Bush White House to shrink its estimate for this year's budget deficit just as the presidential campaign intensifies. The White House budget office said Friday that because it now expects tax to be $76 billion -- or 4.2% -- above its February projections, it now expects the deficit for the year ended Sept. 30 to be $445 billion. In February, it predicted the deficit would be $521 billion."
July 31, 2004 -- The International Herald Tribune has reported that "The U.S. Postal Service is going back to delivering mail to Europe the old-fashioned way - by sending it to the local post office. Among other things, the change means that packages will travel along a more direct route from America, and European residents will be able to go to their local post office to pick them up, rather than having to wait at home for hours for deliveries. Since late 2001, these parcels, when sent from a U.S. post office to a European address, have come to the Continent through a single entry point, Neuenstein, Germany, where they were fanned out to their ultimate EU destinations."
July 31, 2004 -- The Quad-City Times has reported that "Davenport postal officials are investigating complaints in which 30 to 40 residents say they received pornographic photographs in their mailboxes Friday, which is a federal offense, Davenport Postmaster Dan Foley said. . “First of all, it looks as though postage was not paid,” he said. “It looks as though the person took old letters and cut out the postage portion of them, and then pasted that postage on the envelopes containing the porn.” . There also are the issues of delivering unsolicited mail and the misuse of mail receptacles and sending mail of a harassing nature, he said. Foley said that all of the calls he received came from the area of East 46th, 47th and 48th streets."
July 31, 2004 -- The Angola Press has reported that "Angolan minister of Postal Services and Telecommunications Licínio Tavares Friday in Luanda appealed to local and foreign operators to participate in the relaunch of postal services in the country. Speaking at a ceremony of presentation of the Steering Plan of Development of Angola`s Postal Services, the minister said that the State alone cannot afford the costs of relaunching the modernisation of the services in the present stage. The minister said as well that thanks to its multi-functionality, the Ministry wants the postal services to play a national integration factor tole, facilitating the resettlement of displaced people into their areas of origin. The postal services Steering Plan that was approved in May this year by the Cabinet Council, will be implemented over a period of nine years, being the first three for the relaunch and the remainder six for consolidation and development. The reforms in Angola`s postal services started in 2001, with the approval of a new basic law on the postal services that opens the mail activity to market competition. The Steering Plan makes provisions for units of business, with specific and autonomous features enough for their own development with a view to commercial societies with small branches and subsidiaries."
July 31, 2004 -- The Times of India has reported that "Shortage of revenue stamps has started affecting business in Dhanbad district. The crisis has reportedly been created because of tussle between the postal department and the district treasury over payment of commission. The postal department and district administration do not seem eager to solve the problem." Talk about well-placed advertising. This story was followed with an ad from Stamps.com for its online postage service.
July 31, 2004 -- According to the Asahi Shimbun, "The Universal Postal Convention requires member countries-Japan among them-to provide nationwide mail service. Letters and postcards have a warmth to them that telephone calls and e-mails lack. What's more, many elderly people cannot handle the Internet. A universal postal delivery service should be maintained even after the privatization of Japan Post. But such service entails manpower and other costs, especially if it is made compulsory throughout the country. The private sector should be relied upon to provide services to the extent that it is possible. Almost every city, town and village is home to nongovernmental financial institutions. These institutions should handle the bulk of the financial services provided by the postal savings and postal insurance systems."
July 31, 2004 -- According to Japan Today, "A privatization of Japan Post into four independent units could increase profits by up to 900 billion yen a year, according to an estimate presented Friday to the government's postal privatization preparatory office." See also the Nikkei news service.
July 31, 2004 -- Rediff.com (India) has reported that "In an innovative move the Department of Posts has joined hands with Idea Cellular and will soon be marketing Idea SIM cards from post offices in regions where the cell company operates."
July 31, 2004 -- According to the Mainichi Shimbun, "Japan Post will retain fixed deposits, the main savings instrument in the state-run postal finance programs, after privatization."
July 30, 2004 -- According to one writer for the Lexington Institute, "Threatened by sprinting electronic communications that leave traditional mail in the dust, the Postal Service’s business model has become increasing outdated. Meanwhile, its workforce is graying, and the organization is straining under the burden of almost $90 billion in unfunded liabilities – mostly related to future health and retirement costs. But led by Postmaster General John Potter, USPS is in the process of making a “Lance Armstrong” comeback of its own. In the past few years, the Postal Service has made a legitimate effort at reform, working to reduce its massive bureaucracy and come down to competitive trim."
July 30, 2004 -- DM News has reported that "The U.S. Postal Service wants to try charging extra for the use of repositionable notes, commonly known as "stickies," on the outside of envelopes to see whether mailers will pay. Market research commissioned by the USPS in April revealed that consumers responded favorably to RPNs. It also found that businesses that thought RPNs increased response rates would be willing to pay an added charge. But not everyone agrees with that reasoning. Using that logic, any creative tactic employed by mailers to increase response could be subject to an extra charge, Schick said. Leo Raymond, director of postal affairs for the Mailing & Fulfillment Service Association, understands the postal service's desire to raise rates on RPN mail "from a marketing perspective." However, he said, it's unclear how mailers would react to the charge." See the PostCom Weblog for the Association's likely course of action.
July 30, 2004 -- Bloomberg has reported that "Deutsche Post AG, Europe's largest postal service, raised its earnings forecast for the year after a gain from last month's sale of stock in the consumer-banking business helped boost second-quarter profit 87 percent. Deutsche Post shares rose as much as 3.4 percent."
July 30, 2004 -- Dow Jones has reported that "Deutsche Post World Net AG said Friday it wants to buy into Denmark's postal delivery service, Post Danmark. Deutsche Post is participating in the tender offer for a 25% stake in the Dutch company, Chief Executive Klaus Zumwinkel said Friday. State-owned Post Danmark is one of a number of assets the Danish government is looking into selling. Deutsche Post will spend less than EUR100 million on the stake, Chief Financial Officer Edgar Ernst added later."
July 30, 2004 -- The Canadian Press has reported that "A new audit at Canada Post has raised "troubling questions" about management practices and prompted Revenue Minister John McCallum to demand an explanation from suspended president Andre Ouellet." See also the Toronto Star.
July 30, 2004 -- “It is clear from the ideas and issues tabled at the NAMMU National Forum on The Future of Worksharing Incentives, the mailing industry is demanding not only a voice but real positive and accountable action by Canada Post and government.” stated Kathleen Rowe, NAMMU president, in an interview following the session July 28th. NAMMU pooled significant industry expertise at the National Forum to act as a catalyst for ideas and priorities to be submitted to the new Minister Responsible for Canada Post, the Honourable John McCallum, as well as senior executive at Canada Post. This is the second step in the Association’s follow-through action on the process, proposals, and timing issues NAMMU tabled with the Minister, as well as the president of Canada Post, Anne Joynt, in response to the gazetting of June 26th which proposed changes to the Exclusive Privilege products.
July 30, 2004 -- AllAfrica.com has reported that "The Postal Corporation of Kenya and SimbaNet/Africa 1 yesterday launched a partnership deal for the distribution of Africa 1 Internet cards through postal outlets. The Africa 1 roaming cards will enable clients to subscribe and renew their Internet service subscriptions without having to visit the ISP firm's offices."
July 29, 2004 -- Suddeutsche Zeitung (Germany) has reported that "Deutsche Post, the German postal service operator, has reached an agreement with trade union Ver.di regarding holiday pay and Christmas bonuses for its staff. The German government had abolished holiday pay for civil servants from 2004 onwards, and had reduced Christmas bonuses from 84 to 60 per cent. In principle, this also applied to employees with the status of official in companies that succeeded the former Deutsche Bundespost; however, there was an option to apply to the federal ministry of finance for a special payment, and Deutsche Post is said to have taken advantage of this."
July 29, 2004 -- From the PR Newswire: "Northrop Grumman Corporation reported that second quarter 2004 income from continuing operations rose 40 percent to $289 million, or $0.79 per diluted share, compared with $207 million, or $0.55 per diluted share, for the same period of 2003. Sales in Government Systems rose 72 percent, primarily due to higher sales to the U.S. Postal Service."
July 29, 2004 -- As Straight.com has noted, "Baarle is a community with a twist: large pieces of the town are actually part of another country--Belgium. And there is another twist: inside those pieces of Belgium are pieces of the Netherlands. The situation is created by a number of enclaves, portions of a country that are actually outside the country and surrounded by a different country. Because Baarle is made up of more than 30 enclaves, it is sliced and diced by borders. They run through homes, businesses, streets, and parks--everywhere. Because the community is made up of two different countries, there's a lot of duplication. There are two civic governments--which means there are two elections for two mayors. There are also two sets of regional and national elections. There are two postal services. If you mail a letter from one country to another (which, in this case, means across the street), the letter will take a long route out of Baarle to Amsterdam or Brussels before returning to Baarle. This isn't the case when mailing within the same Baarle community. You can save yourself several days' delay by simply walking to the nearest mailbox in the other country and mailing from there. But use the right stamp!"
July 29, 2004 -- Business Mailers Review has reported that:
Business Mailers Review is published biweekly by Sedgwick Publishing Co. For subscription information, check the BMR web site. Our thanks to the publisher for permitting the use of this precis.
July 29, 2004 -- From the PR Newswire: "Diebold, Incorporated, a leading provider of integrated security systems and solutions, has signed a national service agreement with the United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) to support its National Intrusion Detection System program. The one-year contract, which is renewable annually for up to four more years, includes panel repairs, upgrades or additions as needed to establish communications between each of the USPIS locations with the National Law Enforcement Communications Centers (NLECC)."
July 29, 2004 -- The Scotsman (U.K.) has reported that "Stamps, TV licence, road tax, pension, benefits, passport application forms . . . for generations the only place to meet with Big Brother’s regulations on everyday life - and one of the best places to communicate with the outside world - was the local post office. As a result it was also a great place to catch up on the local gossip, bringing all kinds of people together on a daily basis. But changing lifestyles, policies and new technology have revolutionised society - and now post offices are virtually redundant. That seemed to be reinforced yesterday by the Post Office’s announcement that one in five of the city’s post offices will close."
July 29, 2004 -- From the Federal Register:
July 29, 2004 -- The Grimsby Telegraph has reported that "Hundreds of Grimsby postal workers could vote to strike tomorrow over possible job cuts at the town's Royal Mail sorting office. The workers will be discussing the possibility of industrial action, which could include a strike, working to rule or the refusal to work overtime, at their regular Communication Workers Union (CWU) meeting."
July 29, 2004 -- According to Business Report (South Africa), "For those living in formal housing in the suburbs of our cities, a physical address is usually taken for granted. It is used when applications are made to open a bank account, when a telephone or electricity connection is ordered, when registering children for school, and often for receiving post office mail. It is also used in situations of emergency: calling out police, ambulance or fire services. However, many South Africans do not have a formal physical address. Even where addresses do exist, there are often gaps and inconsistencies. Any initiative to develop a complete and authoritative system of addresses for the whole country has to integrate existing disparate addresses into one common address standard, and to assign addresses in areas where they do not exist."
July 29, 2004 -- Business World (Ireland) has reported that "An Post is to close its loss-making parcel delivery service SDS where 800 permanent and contract staff work."
July 29, 2004 -- The Irish Times has reported that "The Communications Workers' Union (CWU) hinted last night that An Post's plan to shut down its SDS parcel service with the possible loss of 800 jobs could derail the Labour Relations Commission (LRC) talks over its broader restructuring plan."
July 29, 2004 -- The CommentWire has reported that "Deutsche Post is continuing with its relentless STAR restructuring program, launched in November 2002. Although the plan involves some stringent cost cutting measures, it should not be interpreted as just another salvation plan undertaken by a postal operator. DP is on course to establish itself as a global logistics giant but the next step on the road could yet be the most difficult. The company announced on July 27 that it had saved some E500 million since the STAR program began. DP aims to reduce its costs by at least a further E1.4 billion by the end of 2005, announcing provisional plans to close scores of small post office branches across Germany. There can be little doubting the success of STAR. One its most significant recent advances has been the creation of a global procurement organization, which has helped the company reduce its expenditure on indirect goods and services, such as vehicles and IT systems. This measure is expected to save the group at least another E200 million by 2005."
July 29, 2004 -- The Journal News has a nice little piece of postal history with a story about "Benjamin Franklin's milestones still mark the way on the Boston Post Road, which winds its way though the nation's history with a tale at every turn. The route from New York to Boston was blazed by order of King Charles II of England, who demanded better communication between his colonial governors."
July 29, 2004 -- The Jersey Journal has reported that "Residents at the new Jack Greene Homes development in Bayonne's Bergen Point (NJ) will be getting individual mailboxes for their homes, not the centralized cluster boxes originally promised. However, the individual mailboxes will be near the curb - not on the houses, according to an announcement released by City Hall this week."
July 29, 2004 -- KWWL-TV has reported that "Residents of one Waterloo (IA) neighborhood may have to do some extra walking to pick up their mail. The postmaster has warned door-to-door delivery may be stopped in one of the city's eastside neighborhoods because of complaints about dogs running wild. The Waterloo City Council has rejected a proposal to toughen the city's animal control ordinance."
July 29, 2004 -- Fox41.com has reported that "A decision to switch to curbside mail delivery in two Louisville (KY) neighborhoods is causing some confusion. The U.S. postal service made the decision after encountering problems with loose dogs in the Rangeland area. But neighbors in Newburg say they were sent letters telling them to do the same or they wouldn't receive their mail." I think the radar screen has dropped a bit. There seems to be a discernible pattern here.
July 29, 2004 -- From the Business Wire: "URS Corporation has announced that, through a joint venture formed with Parsons Brinckerhoff Construction Services, Inc., the Company has been awarded a nationwide Construction Management Support Services Contract (CMSSC) with the United States Postal Service (USPS). This contract is an indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract with the USPS Supply Management Facilities Portfolio Group to provide services for the USPS' Major Facilities Office (MFO) and the eight Facility Service Offices (FSOs) across the country."
July 29, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "The Japanese government plans to have a say on postage charges to be set by an entity to be created after privatization of postal services."
July 29, 2004 -- According to the Associated Press, "The U.S. Postal Service famously does its work in snow, rain, heat and the gloom of night. In Iraq, bullets, rockets and chaos are keeping couriers from swift completion of their appointed rounds. But the Iraqi mail is getting faster, a U.S. postal team reported Wednesday after spending six months there to help revamp the system. Domestic mail that once took weeks to reach its destination is getting there in days, and the time for international deliveries is going from months to weeks."
July 28, 2004 -- The Business Times has reported that "POS Malaysia Bhd, the country's national postal company, said it will buy 20.3 per cent of airtransport Transmile Group Bhd for RM253.1 million (S$115 million) in stock and cash to expand its activities and boost earnings."
July 28, 2004 -- The Yomiuri Shimbun has reported that "The government has begun looking into allowing Japan Post to take up international postal delivery services and acquire companies before the privatization of postal services in 2007."
July 28, 2004 -- From the Business Wire: "When 105 million registered users, with money in hand, are browsing eBay, the $25 billion a year Internet site becomes a selling venue that most retailers can no longer overlook. Marketworks, the Atlanta-based leading provider of sales automation software and marketing services for online selling, has launched a new "Distributed Selling" technology that allows retailers to sell inventory on eBay from multiple locations. PostNet, a large postal and business services provider with 850+ franchise stores, has selected Marketworks software to power its new eBay drop-off business, allowing customers to bring items into a PostNet location for sale on eBay. PostNet handles everything required to sell the product on eBay and mails the customer a check for a portion of the sales proceeds. This strategy draws incremental traffic to stores and creates a new revenue stream for PostNet."
July 28, 2004 -- The Socialist Worker Online has reported that "the director in charge of stamping out bullying and harassment at Royal Mail has herself been investigated for bullying, according to the Times newspaper."
July 28, 2004 -- The U.S. Postal Service has published in the Federal Register a "proposed rule would delete International Mail Manual (IMM) 292.212, 292.213, and 293.75, which authorize mailers who spend $2 million or more combined on International Priority Mail (IPA) and International Surface Air Lift (ISAL) in the preceding Postal Service fiscal year to receive discounted postage rates. Comments must be received on or before August 18, 2004."
July 28, 2004 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal) has reported that:
Don't be satisfied with a less than complete report on the courier, express, and postal market in Europe. Get your subscription to CEP News, today..
July 28, 2004 -- As the Wall Street Journal has reported that:
July 28, 2004 -- Die Welt has reported that "Deutsche Post, the German postal service operator, has confirmed that it is examining the viability of its small post offices. Market experts are speculating that up to 1,000 post offices might be closed down and will be partly replaced by postal agencies based at food shops, while German trade union Verdi believes that up to 1,700 post offices might be shut down."
July 28, 2004 -- The Fort Worth Star-Telegram has reported that "A proposal to close service windows at two east Arlington post offices has been scrapped because of overwhelming opposition from residents and businesses, postal officials said Tuesday. In a Postal Service-sponsored survey of the community around the stations, respondents favored keeping services the same by a 2-to-1 ratio, said McKinney Boyd, a U.S. Postal Service spokesman in North Texas."
July 28, 2004 -- The Asahi Shimbun has reported that "Yamato Transport Co. and Japan Post are competing to secure footholds for their mail and parcel delivery services at convenience stores nationwide. The turf battle has broken out as Yamato Transport expands its services into areas that were once the exclusive remit of the state postal service. In July, the company began accepting printed matter for home delivery at outlets of Seven-Eleven Japan Co. Under the law that governs mail delivery services by private-sector business, Yamato Transport is not licensed to deliver letters, postcards and other personal mail."
July 28, 2004 -- DM News has reported that "The U.S. Postal Service's Parcel Return Service generated $10 million since it began as a two-year pilot program in October, the postal service said yesterday. Parcel Return Service lets mailers provide customers with a prepaid return label that can be included in shipments, mailed to customers or made available for download via the Internet. Merchants, or their parcel consolidators that have been approved as participants in the pilot, can pick up returned merchandise at a post office delivery unit or bulk mail center. Newgistics, a returns management company in Austin, TX, was the first company to use PRS. It picks up returned merchandise for its customers."
July 28, 2004 -- From the PR Newswire: "The Postal Service has signed a multi- year ordering agreement with Motorola for a new generation of Intelligent Mail(R) hand-held scanning devices. The scanners contribute to Postal Service efforts to give postal customers and postal operations end-to-end visibility of mail from processing to delivery. The scanners will include the capability for both the 4-state barcode and 2-dimensional (2-d) codes. The 4-state barcode, currently under testing by the Postal Service, can hold nearly 3 times as much data as the current POSTNET code that is used by the Postal Service to sort and deliver the mail. The 2-d code, currently used today in PC Postage, can contain considerably more data than a barcode in the same amount of space."
July 28, 2004 -- According to Air Cargo World, "The world's largest cargo companies signaled that the logistics and transport landscape is about to change in a dramatic way. Exel, the $9 billion logistics giant, put up a $596.7 million offer to acquire Tibbett & Britten, a $2.6 billion logistics player and the largest consumer goods logistics company in Europe. With Deutsche Post World Net considering whether to top that bid and rival TNT Post Group adding a large freight forwarding operation in the same week, it appeared that the logistics operators saw a spreading global economic recovery as reason to return to the go-go consolidation of the 1990s."
July 28, 2004 -- AllAfrica.com has reported that "The South African Post Office (SAPO) and the United States Postal Services (USPS) have joined hands in the fight against international postal crime. To this end, the Inspectorate of the USPS is in the country presenting a course that will enable participating countries to access global database of mail irregularities that occur in different countries. It is known as eMaria, an acronym for Mathematical Analysis of Route Irregularities in the Air Transport of Mail."
July 28, 2004 -- PDFZone has reported that "The 9,000 companies who use activePDF Toolkit can use the robust Electronic Postmark signing and authentication backed by the U.S. Postal Service. activePDF announced the service in conjunction with AuthentiDate, the company that administers the service."
July 28, 2004 -- According to the Federal Times, "Representatives of U.S. Postal Service managers say a new pay-for-performance system is working and that an added emphasis on midyear reviews is one positive effect of the program."
July 28, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "A key economic policymaking panel began substantive discussions Tuesday on privatization of the nation's postal services as part of its efforts to adopt a final report on the matter in September."
July 28, 2004 -- According to the Asahi Shimbun, "a key economic panel has been presented with guidelines that would require the privatized Japan Post to offer universal mail services but not universal savings accounts or life insurance policies as it does now." See also the Kyodo news service.
July 28, 2004 -- The Memphis Business Journal has reported that "Global express delivery company DHL unveiled a new print, broadcast and online advertising campaign with an Olympic theme on Tuesday, hoping to vanquish its U.S.-based rivals."
July 28, 2004 -- G4techTV asks: "Which saves you more money: buying a book of stamps or downloading postage software?"
July 28, 2004 -- The Daily Yomiuri has reported that "The new entity to be established after the privatization of Japan Post in 2007 will be allowed to deliver large parcels such as ski equipment and golf bags, a service very popular with customers of private delivery companies. The government plans to ease the current size restriction of parcels for the new entity to make competition as fair as possible with private-sector companies. After privatization, the entity will no longer have the benefit of being exempt from paying corporate tax. "
July 27, 2004 -- According to postal commentator Gene Del Polito, "Postal reform is going down for the three-count, if it's not already dead in the water. A gander at the legislative calendar shows that time's running out, and since this year's House and Senate committee actions no substantive progress has been made in putting a reform measure on the President's desk. Congress, however, has not yet adjourned sine die, and some precious time remains to take stock of reality and move quickly to rectify an injustice that will exact an unnecessary cost from the bottom lines of thousands of companies, schools, churches, and charities across America. That cost, of course, will be a postal rate increase swollen unnecessarily by the imposition of an escrow on the savings derived from an overpayment mailers have made for years toward postal retirement pensions."
July 27, 2004 -- According to the Journal of Commerce:
July 27, 2004 -- The Los Angeles Daily News has reported that "A free workshop for Hispanic business owners on how to use direct mail to attract customers will be presented by the United States Postal Service at 7:30 a.m. at the LAX Hilton, 5711 W. Century Blvd. in Westchester. Call (714) 662-6381."
July 27, 2004 -- The Clanton Advertiser has reported that "Chilton County Sheriff's Investigators have spent the last several days tracking an identity theft scam that has led them from Clanton across the Atlantic Ocean to Russia. The United States Postal Service has been trying to prosecute the business, known as BTI, for several years but a lack of cooperation with Russian law enforcement has stalled their efforts."
July 27, 2004 -- According to DM News, "The U.S. Postal Service said yesterday that it authorized online stamp vendor Stamps.com, Santa Monica, CA, to market test PhotoStamps, a new PC Postage product that lets customers create postage with their own designs, images and photographs."
July 27, 2004 -- Bruce Moyer, Legislative Counsel to the National Association of Postal Supervisors, told his members that "While reform advocates are not ready to throw in the towel, it's doubtful that the 18 days during which Congress will be in session in September will provide enough time for final action. Moreover, a key Senate leader on postal reform, Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), chair of the Governmental Affairs Committee, was tasked late last week by Majority Leader Bill Frist with drafting legislation by October 1 to accomplish the government reorganization changes recommended by the 9-11 commission report. That weighty assignment will push postal reform even further off the Senate's plate."
July 27, 2004 -- According to CitizensVoice.com, "Expensive postal fees are a dilemma facing families of local military personnel sending needed or just morale-boosting items to loved ones in Iraq. Currently, the U.S. Postal Service, in cooperation with the military, ships packages to soldiers at domestic rates, instead of international rates. However, this is still a substantial cost, especially when sending mass amounts on a frequent basis as do the family support groups of national guardsmen of the 109th Field Artillery."
July 27, 2004 -- From the PR Newswire: "Pitney Bowes Inc. has announced second quarter 2004 revenue and earnings performance in line with previous guidance. Commenting on the quarter, Chairman and CEO Michael J. Critelli said, "We are pleased that our financial performance was on target during the quarter. The quarter's results included good market acceptance of new products by small and mid-size, international, and document messaging technologies customers and ongoing integration of acquisitions such as DDD Company and International Mail Express. This is consistent with our plan to grow by enhancing the core businesses and expanding our market presence through strategic acquisitions. The acquisition of Group 1 Software, which was completed last week, is the latest example of our strategy to grow our share of the $250 billion global mail and document management markets. This acquisition will help us expand our global reach; grow our mailstream participation; and lay the foundation for profitable expansion into the customer communication market."
July 27, 2004 -- According to the Evening News (U.K.), "Under-fire Royal Mail said today it was set to employ up to 100 extra staff in a bid to improve the postal service in Norwich. "
July 27, 2004 -- The Isle of Man Online has reported that "One of the UK's largest express delivery companies is petitioning the Manx government to remove the monopoly currently held by Isle of Man Post. "
July 26, 2004 -- According to Federal Computer Week, "E-government initiatives are not easy, but they should not be more difficult than the old processes. The U.S. Postal Service offers a case in point. When people want to change their addresses online, they must provide a credit card number and they are charged $1. This cost, USPS officials say, adds an element of security to the online form and the dollar pays for the associated credit card fees. If the same people go into a post office, however, they can fill out the form at no cost — even though an employee must key that data into the system. Postal Service officials argue that the fee is justified because of the convenience of using the Web and because online users get coupons that offset the cost. Furthermore, they note that more than 1.3 million people used the online service, illustrating, they say, that the fee has not discouraged people. In fact, assessing the ramifications of the fee is almost impossible."
July 26, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "The government is considering revising laws to enable Japan Post to extend mortgages and other types of loans following a planned privatization of the government-backed organization."
July 26, 2004 -- The Moscow Times has reported that "Aircraft maker Sukhoi, keen to make more civilian jets, struck deals to sell a total of 77 airplanes to Russian customers last week at the Farnborough Air Show in Britain, including a seven-jet order from Russia's postal service."
July 25, 2004 -- The Middletown Press has reported that "Approximately 20 friends and family members of the postal workers alleging harassment, a violent workplace and unfair firings at the East Hampton Post Office held an informational picket in front of the post office on Saturday."
July 25, 2004 -- The Los Angeles Daily News has reported that "Democratic Congressman Brad Sherman has picked a political fight with a powerful Northern California Republican over mailings paid for with public funds, calling them blatantly political and a waste of taxpayer money. But Republicans say the Sherman Oaks lawmaker should curb his own use of publicly funded mail -- some $90,000 a year -- before criticizing others for the practice."
July 25, 2004 -- Nikkei has reported that "The government is considering keeping the privatized postal savings, life insurance and mail companies intact as nationwide firms since dividing them into regional units, as some people have proposed, would hurt their efficiency and inconvenience customers, government sources said Saturday. The government is also mulling the possibility of retaining a controlling stake in the privatized mail service company. Privatization of Japan Post, which runs the three postal services, is scheduled for April 2007. It has already been decided to set up private companies for each service as well as strip 270,000 postal workers of their status as public employees after privatization. The question of whether to split the privatized operations into several local units is one of the last major issues yet to be determined."
July 24, 2004 -- The Philadelphia Inquirer has asked: "How often does Philadelphia see a huge public works project that doesn't cost local taxpayers a bundle, yet boosts jobs and business opportunities in an area of the city where both are scarce? You can count the times on one hand, most likely. Topping that short list of projects, though, would be the new U.S. Postal Service distribution center taking shape in Southwest Philadelphia."
July 24, 2004 -- According to The Street, "U.S. package revenue still accounts for the lion's share of UPS' business, with domestic revenue coming in at $6.48 billion. Operating margins for the segment came in at 13.8%, a gain of 20 basis points and the highest mark in two years. The overall revenue per piece rose 2%. International package revenue came in at $1.61 billion, up nearly 18% year over year, driven by 70% average daily package volume in China. Revenue from UPS' non-package segment came in at $778 million, up 6.4%, driven by a 7.2% gain in revenue in its supply chain solutions business.
July 24, 2004 -- The DM Bulletin (U.K.) has reported that "The Trade and Industry Select Committee has criticised Royal Mail for closing 2,500 urban post offices, leaving customers 'confused and dissatisfied'. MPs criticised Royal Mail for not carrying out a "longer, more open and inclusive consultation process" before deciding what branches to shut. Royal Mail has an obligation to consult local communities about closures because of the post office's provision of a social service. According to The Times, committee members were concerned that further closures may take place under the programme which Royal Mail are calling "network reinvention"."
July 24, 2004 -- Japan Times has reported that "The government might strip Japan Post workers of their public-servant status and might end the guarantee on ordinary deposits in 2007, when postal service privatization is phased in, according to government sources."
July 24, 2004 -- According to the Daily Yomiuri, "The government will not make it a legal obligation for postal savings and kampo life insurance--two of the three main services offered at post offices--to be provided as universal services after the planned privatization of Japan Post in 2007. If two independent privatized postal entities are created for the postal savings and kampo life insurance services, they will be able to freely offer different levels of services at post offices nationwide."
July 24, 2004 -- The Kyodo news service has reported that "The retail operation is designed to cover over-the-counter retail services for the mail, postal savings and "Kampo" postal insurance operations, but a government privatization task force also envisions the retail side selling private-sector financial products as well as merchandise. Estimates by the task force show that all the four operations would produce annual profits 310 billion yen for the retail operation, 339 billion yen for the mail, 1,745 billion yen for the postal savings and 295 billion yen for the insurance, the sources said. The assumption for the estimates is that an entity for the retail operation would receive commissions from the other three, they said. "
July 23, 2004 -- La Tribune has reported that "Geopost, the parcel delivery subsidiary of La Poste, the French national postal services group, has sold its logistics activity to Logista, the logistics company which is 57 per cent controlled by Altadis, the Franco-Spanish tobacco group."
July 23, 2004 -- The McHugh postal reform task force report, "Answering the Administration's Call for Postal Reform," has been posted.
July 23, 2004 -- UPS has reported an 18.2% gain in net income for the second quarter on a 7.8% increase in revenue with strong growth in its global small package business. In addition, the company raised its future guidance and expects full year 2004 earnings growth to approach 20 percent"
July 23, 2004 -- The Middletown Press has reported that "Postal workers and their families are holding an informational picket in front of the post office Saturday to address alleged workplace harassment and violence they say their spouses are experiencing."
July 23, 2004 -- The Savannah Morning News has reported that "The U.S. Postal Service's sponsorship of Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong connotes speed and endurance. After all, the cyclist has conquered the Alps. But on the coastal plains of Savannah, local mail delivery has apparently fallen off that pace. Home deliveries after 5 p.m. and misdelivered mail are the primary complaints. That's partly because Savannah is working with about one of every seven carriers off, according to Jean Wilkes, communications specialist with the USPS in Macon. The rush of summer vacations has combined with an unusual number of retirements lately to leave the postal service shorthanded."
July 23, 2004 -- GovExec.com has reported that "The Postal Service can fire an employee who forged his supervisor's signature on medical forms, despite the employee's nine-year clean disciplinary record, the Merit Systems Protection Board found recently. After an extended argument with his supervisors over whether he had a disability severe enough to limit him from completing all his job responsibilities, Kevin Adam, a PS-3 level custodian for the Postal Service, resorted to forging a signature on a medical documentation processing request form. But he spelled her name wrong."
July 23, 2004 -- As one writer for the DM Bulletin (U.K.) has proclaimed, "I have been one of the few people in marketing who has tried to defend Royal Mail, writes Paul Seligman, managing director of Communicator. Despite a few well-publicised mess-ups, I still harboured rosy images of the Queen's post being delivered by chirpy postmen and women up and down the land. But all this has changed over the past few months. Royal Mail has decided that our company no longer merits an account manager. Instead, our account teams have to use the Royal Mail's inappropriately named Sales and Customer Support Line -- a source of erroneous and, often, conflicting information, depending on who you are unfortunate enough to get through to."
July 23, 2004 -- The Japanese government is considering removing federal employment and pay guarantees given to Japan Post's 270,000 workers once the postal service goes private in 2007, Nikkei English News reported.
July 23, 2004 -- The Asahi Shimbun has reported that "In a move some say amounts to no change at all, the government is mapping out a route to split up Japan Post's three key services-mail delivery, postal savings and postal insurance-into three separate, though financially tied, companies. Sources say several frameworks are being considered. One possibility is to put three service providers under a holding company that owns and manages 24,000 post offices, among other assets. An alternative envisions a mail delivery company that would also operate savings and insurance companies as subsidiaries."
July 23, 2004 -- The Philadelpha Inquirer has reported that "Parking 'smart card' gets an overhaul. Some arrived to purchasers mail-damaged. Others could not be inserted. The city says it is addressing the problems."
July 23, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki said Friday the government needs to clarify how it will privatize the nation's postal services without generating concerns over creating a possible glut in the Japanese government bond market and extra operational costs."
July 23, 2004 -- The Viet Nam News Agency has reported that "At the meeting, the first of its kind hosted by Laos, over 30 delegates from ten ASEAN member countries reviewed the implementation of the ASEAN postal administrations’ working plan to achieve their Postal Strategic Goals approved at the 22nd Universal Postal Congress in Beijing, China."
July 22, 2004 -- The Detroit Free Press has reported that "The U.S. Postal Service says it plans to build an 850,000-square-foot distribution center that could employ up to 1,500 people. Completion will take at least four years."
July 22, 2004 -- The Globe and Mail has reported that "Dogs may not care what their biscuits look like, but Canada Post certainly does.The Crown corporation has successfully lobbied a chain of pet stores to stop selling its popular biscuits shaped like letter carriers."
July 22, 2004 -- As USA Today has reported, "To the casual observer, "snail mail" is doomed. Bills can be paid with a mouse click. Photographs, even lengthy PowerPoint presentations, arrive instantly by e-mail. But Pitney Bowes (PBI) doesn't believe it."
July 22, 2004 -- In response to another mindless newspaper-based diatribe against mail, Mail and Jobs Coalition executive director Peter Miller (and former journalist) wrote:
According to columnist Dave Russell, "the whole concept of junk mail" is offensive, a view which needs further examination. ("Beware of the latest scourge in junk e-mail: `empowerment fantasies,'" June 20, 2004) Russell certainly does not say that newspapers compete with the postal system for advertiser dollars. He complains that ad mail includes "credit card, gutter protection and real estate offers," but does the Citizen-Times refuse real estate ads, home repair ads or ads from banks? And he surely does not tell readers that advertisers will spend more than $50 billion on ad mail this year -- more than will be spent on newspaper advertising. Russell does not explain how a catalog, flyer, coupon or sample sent through the mails differs in any way from the very same items, on the very same paper, from the very same advertisers when inserted into a newspaper. Russell uses the term "junk mail" repeatedly but does not tell readers how the expression originated. "Magazines and newspapers," explains The Washington Post, "have been at war with advertising mailers for a long time -- ever since the mailers began siphoning ad dollars away from publications. Indeed, newspaper editorialists invented the term 'junk mail' in the early 1950s." Russell does not tell readers that mail produces jobs -- or that less mail means fewer jobs in Asheville. According to a recent study, there are 15,853 mail-related jobs in the 11th congressional district and a total of 237,992 mailstream jobs throughout North Carolina. Russell needs to explain, If less mail is good which local post offices should be closed? If less mail is good, who should mail less? Local businesses? Politicians? Charities? Religious congregations? We believe newspapers are enormously important in every community -- and we also believe newspapers have an obligation to meet basic standards of editorial fairness and impartiality, even when writing about a rival medium.
July 22, 2004 -- If parcel shipping and distribution is important to you, check out the information on the upcoming Parcel Shipping & Distribution Forum.
July 22, 2004 -- The Journal of Commerce has reported that "DHL Worldwide has purchased the naming rights to the home of pro football's Miami Dolphins and reigning World Series champion Florida Marlins."
July 22, 2004 -- If you do business in Canada, be sure to check out the July 28 forum held by the National Association of Major Mail Users (NAMMU) on "The Future of Work Sharing Incentives."
July 22, 2004 -- DM News has reported that according to outgoing president Robert Wientzen, "The DMA and NALC should work together to overcome challenges confronting the postal service, he said. The groups can cooperate on promoting beneficial legislation and collaborate on finding creative ways to boost mail volume. The DMA does not always see eye to eye with postal labor unions. For example, the American Postal Workers Union and its president, William H. Burrus, who referred to large mailers as "vermin" in the union's newsletter last year, oppose workforce reform proposals that the DMA supports."
July 22, 2004 -- The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., last week agreed with a lawsuit filed earlier this year by public interest group Public Citizen that the Hours of Service (HOS) regulations put into effect in January this year "failed to consider the impact of the rules on the health of the drivers," according to the opinion posted on the court's Web site. The new rules expanded the time a driver can drive from 10 to 11 hours a day, but cuts back on the number of hours a driver can be on-duty from 15 to 14 hours a day and eliminates the ability of drivers to "clock out" during meals and fuel breaks and for loading and unloading activity.
July 22, 2004 -- Shippers Newswire has reported that "Deutsche Post said last week it will reduce its nighttime flights at Frankfurt am Main airport to meet noise concerns of the state government of Hesse. The German postal carrier said it will cut its flight schedule in half by eliminating six of its 20 flights in 2005, with a further reduction of four flights in 2006. The postal service will shift overnight mail haulage to its road network. Nighttime flying is more restricted in Europe, where airports tend to be located close to densely populated areas. Deutsche Post said its mail transit times will be unaffected by the adjustment to its network."
July 22, 2004 -- Die Welt has reported that "Hermes Versand, the postal service operator owned by German mail order group Otto, is to set up 10 parcel machines in Hamburg, Munich and Dusseldorf together with its co-operation partner Siemens, the German technologies group, and will thus intensify its competition with Deutsche Post, Germany's leading postal service operator and former monopoly."
July 22, 2004 -- Gibbons Stamp Monthly has reported that "10th August sees the release of Royal Mail’s Royal Society of Arts issue in celebration of the organisation’s 250th anniversary. Comprising of six stamps, each one celebrates significant people or events in the Society’s history: First Class – commemorating Sir Rowland Hill, who was the first person to be awarded the Royal Society of Arts Medal for his postal reforms and the introduction of the Penny Post. The stamp features a Penny Black in the top right corner."
July 22, 2004 -- According to Japan Today, "Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said Thursday he plans to appoint people willing to push ahead with the privatization of Japan's postal services, a major pillar of his reform plans, as ministers when he reshuffles the Cabinet in September."
July 22, 2004 -- Japan Post will team up with Sankyu Inc. to enter the international market by first setting up a network to deliver imported goods from China and Southeast Asia, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported Thursday.
July 22, 2004 -- The Kyodo News Service has reported that "Japan Post President Masaharu Ikuta on Wednesday expressed opposition to a plan to separate postal savings and "kampo" life insurance services from post office operations when the entity is privatized."
July 22, 2004 -- The Inquirer (U.K.) has reported that "A US Postal Service (USPS) automatic parcel tracking service seems to have been taking the stress out of missing packets by linking callers to a phone service that gives executive "relief". More than 22,000 residents were given a card by the USPS with a number to call if they needed help locating their packages. But the number belonged to a phone chat line were customers were offered hot-sex chat, which although likely to remove the stress of missing parcels would do little to locating them. The card did warn users that it was part of the USPS’s new services for rural customers. But acccording to the Miami Herald it turns out that it was only a typo and new cards with a correct number are being issued."
July 22, 2004 -- The Jerusalem Post has reported that "The Postal Law was passed for a second and third reading by the Knesset Economics Committee on Wednesday after nearly a year's deliberation. This will make it possible for the Postal Authority to become the Postal Company and compete with the private market."
July 22, 2004 -- The Financial Times (U.K.) has reported that "The Post Office has started to sell car insurance and hopes to capture 5 per cent of the competitive UK market within three years. It is the second product after personal loans to be launched as a result of the Post Office's recently launched joint venture with the Bank of Ireland, through which it aims to become a significant force in the financial services market."
July 22, 2004 -- News.com.au has reported that "As postal services investigate ways to update and streamline IT systems, a Melbourne IT consultancy has positioned itself as a front runner to secure some of the multimillion-dollar contracts that will be on offer. SMT Consulting, a specialist supply chain and business performance consultancy for more than 15 years, has been working with Australia Post since 1999 to improve efficiency in mail centres. Recently, it finished a 12-month pilot with Britain's Royal Mail."
July 22, 2004 -- Borsen Zeitung has reported that "Deutsche Post, the German postal service operator, intends to cut around 10,000 jobs in Germany every year, but has no plans to extend working hours or to reduce personnel costs further. Management also revealed yesterday that it had reached an agreement with trade unions, as part of which it had committed itself not to make any staff redundant until March 2008."
July 22 2004 -- The U.S. Postal Service still expects to hold rates steady until 2006 after a positive third-quarter performance, chief financial officer Richard J. Strasser Jr. said in a quarterly fiscal update to the Board of Governors yesterday. The USPS had a net income of $259 million during the period, Strasser told governors at their meeting in San Francisco. Postmaster general John E. Potter has promised mailers that the postal service won't implement another rate case until at least calendar year 2006.
July 21, 2004 -- From the U.S. Newswire: "The 300,000-member National Association of Letter Carriers today endorsed the candidacy of Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts for President and Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina for Vice President in this November's election."
July 21, 2004 -- Directions magazine has reported that "MetaCarta has teamed with Group 1 in a strategic partnership and reselling agreement that leverages address geocoding technology. MetaCarta’s Geographic Text search (GTS) technology will search text documents for geographic name and place references and, using its proprietary statistical, natural language parser, scans documents to identify and distill this information so that it can be accurately represented on a map. The map acts as a visualization tool to see the locations where these text references occur. Randy Ridley of MetaCarta says, “lots of data are ‘geolocated’ by postal address. Group 1 Software helps with this application where street addresses are noted.” In this way, MetaCarta now has the ability to search unstructured text for geographic references, in addition to detecting street address locations where those details are given."
July 21 2004 -- Chief Financial Officer Richard J. Strasser, Jr. told the Postal Service's Board of Governors meeting here today, that through Quarter 3 of fiscal year 2004, the Postal Service further reduced its debt and is on track to hold rates steady to 2006. Strasser cited increased productivity and a reduction in Civil Service retirement fund overpayments as the principal reasons for the positive outlook. He said that despite slight revenue declines, the Postal Service achieved a net income of $259 million in Quarter 3 on revenues of $16.6 billion. Productivity gains of 1.8 per cent were achieved by managing costs and employee complement.
July 21, 2004 -- In his most recent communique to his members, American Postal Workers Union President William Burrus wrote:
"The Postal Bulletin dated July 8, 2004, previews the USPS fall advertising campaign and proudly notes that actual letter carriers will portray themselves in ads. “For many customers, letter carriers stand for our entire organization,” an excerpt offered by the bulletin says. “They symbolize the team that delivers the best service possible – from retail to collection, from transportation to processing.” The article in the Postal Bulletin left me with the distinct impression that letter carriers would be featured as representative of all postal employees. This would be totally unacceptable to the APWU-represented employees who perform such a wide range of services throughout the nation’s mail system. Letter carriers may be a key component in the world’s best postal service, but delivery of the U.S. Mail requires many categories of employees, including those represented by APWU. Our members take great pride in the contribution we make. After reading the bulletin, I immediately called Pat Donahoe, USPS Chief Operating Officer, to demand the inclusion of APWU-represented employees, and was informed that the ad described in the bulletin is just one part of the “Working For You” campaign that eventually will include all the postal groups that perform essential mail services. We look forward to the portrayal of our members as a vital part of the team that serves our nation. "
July 21, 2004 -- According to the Associated Press, "The FedEx Corp. said Friday it will open 70 new locations for its Kinko's division in the fiscal year ending in May 2005."
July 21, 2004 -- Military.com has reported that "A new labeling system at the U.S. Postal Service is designed to expedite absentee ballots to Soldiers deployed around the world."
July 21, 2005 -- As DM News has noted, "The barcode readability rate for flat mail pieces evaluated by the U.S. Postal Service's Merlin machines increases from 80 percent to 90 percent starting July 31."
July 21, 2005 -- According to one writer for the Bangkok Post, "The concept of e-stamps is not a new idea. Giving people the ability to print out postage in the privacy of their own homes should help people send more letters. The problem, of course, is that of security. "
July 21, 2004 -- According to Japan Today, "The government is toying with the idea of breaking up Japan Post's operations into mail delivery, postal savings and "Kampo" life insurance services and placing them under a holding company."
July 20, 2004 -- San Francisco dBusiness News has reported that "ABM Security Services, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of ABM Industries Incorporated , has been awarded a multi-year, multi-million dollar national contract with the Unites States Postal Service. The contract covers security guard services for more than 60 postal service facilities located in 20 states across the country and includes more that 300 security personnel."
July 20, 2004 -- As DM News has noted, "The postal reform bill was not included on a list of legislative items -- published yesterday -- to be considered by the House of Representatives this week, casting doubt on hopes for swift passage of the bill. After Friday, Congress breaks for the Democratic and Republican national conventions and its traditional summer and Labor Day holidays. Congress won't be back in business until Sept. 7, and tentatively plans to end the current legislative session Oct. 1. This leaves little time for passage of the reform bill if no House vote occurs this week."
July 20, 2004 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "The United States Postal Service (USPS) has announced that it will not renew its contract with General Logistics Systems (GLS) when it expires on the 24 th December this year but will instead co-operate with Deutsche Post, Germany's leading postal service operator The exclusive licence is for the delivery of private parcels ( EMS and standard air parcel traffic) in 23 European countries, estimated to account for some 1.6 million consignments per year. The contract, which was said to be a “Landmark Agreement” when it was originally signed in January 2002, is to cease due to “countless service and fee-gouging complaints”, explained USPS’ VP of Public Affairs. This represents a substantial blow to Royal Mail, the ultimate parent of GLS, at a time when the company is suffering continued quality problems in its home market as well as increasing competition in the UK business to business sector."
July 20, 2004 -- Pacific Business News has reported that "About 12,000 mailmen and -women descended upon Honolulu Monday as the National Association of Letter Carriers kicked off their twice yearly convention. U.S. Postal Service delegates from all 50 states, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and Guam are expected to attend the convention, which runs through Friday."
July 20, 2004 -- From the Canada NewsWire: "Canadian Magazine Publishers Association (CMPA) expresses its dismay today regarding relentless postal rate increases following news that Canada Post Corporation is increasing Publications Mail rates for 2005. The one-year rate structure is effective January 2005. 'Canada Post's continuing rate increases go well beyond current inflation rates and other cost trends in Canada's magazine sector. Postage is, by far, the fastest growing expense for Canadian-content magazines,' said Mark Jamison, CMPA President. 'Canadians have had excellent access to Canadian-content magazines through reasonably priced subscriptions,' continued Jamison, 'but Canada Post's year-over-year price hikes threaten to deprive Canadians of that reasonable access.' Over the past seven years, rates for most magazines have gone up a cumulative 32%. Rates for a 350-gram magazine have gone up 70% over this period.'"
July 20, 2004 -- Bloomberg has reported that "Japan's Financial Services Agency will begin to supervise the country's postal service, another government agency, as it plans to sell mutual funds at post offices, the Nikkei English News said without saying where it obtained its information. The financial regulatory agency said there could be problems with letting Japan Post introduce a service before the government decides on plans for the privatization of its postal services, the report said."
July 20, 2004 -- The Journal of Commerce has reported that "Russia could join the World Trade Organization by the end of 2005, if it can reach the necessary bilateral accords this year."
July 19, 2004 -- CNET News has reported that "Internet marketers facing higher advertising fees on search networks are becoming increasingly concerned about a form of online fraud that was thought to have been contained years ago. The practice, known as "click fraud," began in the early days of the Internet's mainstream popularity with programs that automatically surfed Web sites to increase traffic figures. This led companies to develop policing technologies touted as antidotes to the problem. But some marketing executives estimate that up to 20 percent of fees in certain advertising categories continue to be based on nonexistent consumers in today's search industry."
July 19, 2004 -- "Crown post offices, the 600-strong network of large high street branches, could be sold off, converted into shops or even closed under a review being conducted by Royal Mail, The Times has learnt. If the post offices, many of which are landmarks in towns and cities, do disappear, it would mark one of the biggest shake-ups in the organisation and would infuriate unions and Labour backbenchers. The future of Parcelforce is also unclear, because consultants drafted in to advise Royal Mail on strategy are believed to have suggested its closure. Royal Mail is discussing the possibility of an overhaul of its operations with various consultants. A review by McKinsey, the management consultants, has recommended that the Crown offices should be closed, or converted, and that Parcelforce should go."
July 19, 2004 -- The Associated Press has reported that "Five Dutch postal workers became ill after handling a piece of mail containing yellow powder Sunday evening, police said."
July 18, 2004 -- ChronWatch has reported that "There's a vacancy on the Postal Rate Commission. The post office, as you know, is a government-protected monopoly. Among other things, the PRC is supposed to be an independent board overseeing the monopoly's operations, approving rate hike requests, and considering the closure of under-utilized facilities. Now get this: The person the Senate is considering to fill the PRC vacancy, Mr. Dawn Tisdale, is a former post office employee and labor union leader. Can you say ''conflict of interest,'' boys and girls?"
July 18, 2004 -- According to the Washington Post, "Fairfax County is reinventing the way its 11,500 employees communicate. The county may be the region's epicenter of high technology, but its government lags in one pervasive way that it does business: It's awash in paper. Enter the Paper Reduction Task Force. The goal? To fully usher in the electronic age in Fairfax."
July 18, 2004 -- Bloomberg has reported that "The government of Japan's Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi will sell the nation's state-run postal system, maintaining its push to reform the public service, said Heizo Takenaka, the minister in charge of the effort. ``We'll be privatizing Japan Post in 2007,'' Takenaka said on a debate program on state-run NHK television, a week after being elected to the upper house of parliament in his first-ever poll for public office. ``Our aim is to reform the postal service to make it more profitable for the public.' "
July 18, 2004 -- According to the Milwaukee Sentinel Journal, "UPS is a solid company poised to benefit from an improving economy and the growth of Internet shopping. It's also building its competitive edge by developing more efficient route plans and taking advantage of opportunities in Europe."
July 17, 2004 -- As the National Association of Major Mail Users (NAMMU) has noted, "the trend since Canada Post enacted SIMPLIFICATION of reducing worksharing opportunities and incentives is not favored by the mailing industry. Join mailing industry discussion leaders as they present specific ideas they have to improve business and introduce cost efficiencies through new worksharing ideas. The ideas introduced are intended to generate constructive discussion, gauge support, generate more ideas that can be articulated specifically to Canada Post and government."
. . . . . A sign of the changing postal times?
July 17, 2004 -- The Financial Times has reported that "Royal Mail has been given special permission to check all staff for criminal records, following concerns about postal security and the quality of its recruitment." See also The Independent and The Scotsman.
July 17, 2004 -- Khaleej Times has reported that "Direct Marketing Service launched by Emirates Post early this year is promising bright prospects for the postal organisation in the UAE, projecting between two and five per cent increase in the domestic mail volume annually. The launch of the new service in January 2004 is Emirates Post's initiative following emergence of Direct Mail as a dynamic and result-oriented channel internationally to counter the global decline registered in traditional domestic mail letters by 2.5 per cent, while international mail declined by nine per cent in 2002."
July 16, 2004 -- The U.S. Postal Service has filed with the Postal Rate Commission a "Request for A Recommended Decision for A Market Test of Repositionable Notes on First-Class Mail, Standard Mail, and Periodicals." And, no, this does not make mail any more of a compelling business proposition....
July 16, 2004 -- The coordinator of the Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service has told his colleagues that "it appears unlikely that the House will bring the postal reform bill to the floor next week." That means the next window of opportunity for congressional attenion must wait until September.
July 16, 2004 -- According to postal commentator Gene Del Polito, "It's time for the Postal Service to give product redesign some new thinking. If it doesn't, then there might not be much of product worth thinking about."
July 16, 2004 -- According to postal commentator Gene Del Polito, "There should be no doubt that under Postmaster General Jack Potter's leadership the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has learned how to spot and cut out some of its own fat. The USPS under Potter is much leaner than it's been under any PMG before him, but what has the USPS done lately to make the appeal and value of mail a compelling business proposition?"
July 16, 2004 -- Business Mailers Review has reported that:
July 16, 2004 -- The Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service has sent a letter to the leadership of the House Committee on Government Reform in which it outlines areas of "major concern" with language offered in H.R. 4341.
July 16, 2004 -- From the Business Wire: "The Commerce Department's U.S. Commercial Service has announced the participation of FedEx Corp. in a new initiative to provide ongoing support to Commercial Service efforts aimed at boosting exports from U.S. small and medium-size businesses. The agreement promotes exporting through cooperative public-private sector export tools and resources."
July 16, 2004 -- According to the Lake Sun Leader, "U.S. Postal Service inspectors say more drug dealers caught smuggling illegal narcotics through the agency are using its Express Mail service."
July 16, 2004 -- As CNET News has noted, "New legislation taking effect later this year is triggering a wave of technology spending as banks take further steps toward an all-digital future."
July 16, 2004 -- The Bath Chronicle (U.K.) has reported that "Businesses in Bath can take advantage of a new postal service - for the first time in 400 years, they can choose an alternative provider. UK Mail has signed a agreement with Royal Mail allowing access to its local sorting and final delivery network, which will give businesses a choice between the two companies' business post deals. Initially the alternative postal service is only being offered to businesses which send out more than 5,000 items per day, but UK Mail hopes to extend this as soon as the service is established. The opportunity to take advantage of the guaranteed two-day business class service offered by UK Mail may be eagerly awaited by some Bath businesses, as recent problems at the Royal Mail's Manvers Street sorting office have meant mail reaching homes and businesses late."
July 15, 2004 -- The Associated Press has reported that "President Bush on Thursday signed into law a measure that imposes mandatory prison terms for criminals who use identity theft in committing terrorist acts and other offenses. A criminal will serve an extra five years in prison for using a false passport in connection with a terrorism-related crime. Two years would be tacked on for ID theft in connection with other types of crimes. Some 10 million Americans were victimized by identity thieves last year at a cost of $50 billion, making it one of the fastest-growing financial crimes, Bush said as he signed the bill at the White House."
July 15, 2004 -- From the PR Newswire: "Stamps.com Inc. and eBay Inc. have announced that the companies have resolved various disputes among them that led to the filing of litigation in June 2003. eBay will pay Stamps.com an undisclosed amount up front, designated for settlement. The parties also agreed to a three-year license of software and intellectual property owned by Stamps.com.
July 15, 2004 -- From the Federal Register: "On June 15, 2004, the Board of Governors of the United States Postal Service adopted a revision to its bylaws. The purpose of this revision was to reserve the selection of the independent external auditor to the Presidentially-appointed Governors rather than the full Board of Governors. Consequently, the Postal Service hereby publishes this final rule."
July 15, 2004 -- In its latest report on the Postal Service, the General Accountability Office noted that: "USPS has taken actions, and is planning future actions, to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of its delivery and retail networks. In the delivery area, USPS is continuing efforts to make delivery operations more cost-effective by utilizing efficient routes and delivery locations (e.g., to curbline boxes). We are recommending that the Postmaster General provide improved transparency and communication to inform Congress and other stakeholders of the actions USPS plans to take regarding its retail optimization strategy, including the criteria that will guide its decisions; the process that will be used to involve postal stakeholders; the impact on customers, including those in rural areas; and the time frames for implementing all phases of its retail optimization initiative. In commenting on a draft of this report, USPS concurred with “the spirit of the report’s findings” that improved transparency and communication are needed and said it would be reviewing its process for communicating changes to the retail network with its local districts and other stakeholders."
July 15, 2004 -- The Washington Business Journal has reported that "Dulles-based network security software maker SteelCloud, which announced a deal with "a major federal contractor" two months ago, now reveals its business partner is Lockheed Martin. SteelCloud will supply Lockheed with server equipment as part of Lockheed's big contract to modernize the U.S. Postal Service's mail sorting systems. The job is worth $12 million to SteelCloud, which says the equipment will be delivered over a 12 month period."
July 15, 2004 -- Asia Media has reported that "The Thai Printing Association has stressed the need for more efficient postal services in conjuction with the government's project to make Thailand a printing and publishing hub in Asia."
July 15, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "Japan Post President Masaharu Ikuta said Wednesday he plans to strengthen international competitiveness of the public corporation's postal service so that it can expand its mail delivery service to other Asian countries."
July 15, 2004 -- Reuters has reported that "The government has appointed Martin Stanley, the head of postal regulator Postcomm, as chief executive of its beefed-up competition watchdog. Stanley will start at the Competition Commission in early October and will earn 120,000 pounds a year, the government said in a statement. He replaces Robert Foster, who is retiring. The commission is an independent body that reviews cases on mergers, markets and regulation referred to it by other authorities such as the Office of Fair Trading. Its major decisions include ruling out Lloyds TSB's bid for Abbey National in 2001, effectively barring big bank mergers."
July 14, 2004 -- According to DM News, "Data quality vendors produce different results when cleaning business-to-business data, so the marketer ultimately must decide what information is correct."
July 14, 2004 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal) has reported that:
Don't be satisfied with a less than complete report on the courier, express, and postal market in Europe. Get your subscription to CEP News, today..
July 14, 2004 -- A "Parallel Reprint Of House And Senate Postal Reform Bills As Approved By Congressional Committees" prepared by postal guru Jim Campbell has been posted on this site.
July 14, 2004 -- The USPS® (United States Postal Service®) has set a goal of achieving 85 percent DPS (delivery point sequence) bar-coding by the end of 2004 and 90 percent in 2005, in order to achieve its corporate automation plan of enhanced mail processing and delivery. The foundation for achieving this goal lies in proper address quality. However, there is much more to address quality than just a CASS™ (Coding Accuracy Support System) certificate or a PS3553 statement. What prevents your mailing file from achieving higher delivery point barcode rates? How well do you understand the return codes from your addressing software in order to determine why an address couldn't be assigned? What barriers to effectively raising the bar on address quality do you need to overcome in order to get ready for potential USPS future programs such as FSS (flats sequencing system) and DPP (delivery point packaging)? Join Jody Berenblatt of Time Warner and Firstlogic's Chris Lien for a special Web seminar on issues specifically related to address quality on Tuesday, July 20 at 3:00 p.m. Eastern time (2:00 p.m. Central). For more information or to register, visit Firstlogic's Web site at www.firstlogic.com/addressquality.
July 14, 2004 -- The American Postal Workers Union and the U.S. Postal Service reached agreement July 12 to jointly promote OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Programs in every postal facility that chooses to participate.
July 14, 2004 -- Dow Jones has reported that "Dutch logistics and postal firm TPG N.V. (TP) will only have to pay around EUR2 million to buy out its Turkish joint-venture partner TNT Lojistik vs Dagitim."
July 14, 2004 -- According to Hoovers, "UPS and FedEx are going after the same road warriors, telecommuters and home office workers -- but their methods are surprisingly different. FedEx bought Kinko's this year and plans to spend $20 million "rebranding" its 1,256 stores with TV spots that began this month proclaiming, "Our office is your office." UPS, which absorbed Mail Boxes Etc. two years ago, is hunting retail customers, too. But it's using its 3,400 UPS Stores as a hook for large corporate customers to distribute high-tech parts to field technicians or collect laptop computers or cell phones in need of repairs. Retail package shipments are vital to both companies because infrequent shippers pay higher prices. About 80 percent of all UPS and FedEx packages are steeply discounted for high-volume shippers."
July 14, 2004 -- China's State Postal Bureau (China Post) plans to split off its courier business, known as EMS, and restructure it into a joint-stock national chain to stem the further erosion of its market share by foreign rivals, such as DHL, FedEx Corp and United Parcel Service Inc, an industry source told AFX-Asia. "The plan is to split off EMS by the end of this year and turn it into a national express mail chain responsible for its own losses or gains," an industry source said. "China Post will also restructure EMS into a joint-stock company and open it up for investment from the private sector." The move is a last-ditch effort by China Post to defend it weakening market position amid rising competition from DHL, FedEx and UPS as well as from around 1,000 so called "illegal" private courier firms, he said.
July 14, 2004 -- The Scotland Office has reported that "A daily postal service to homes and premises six days a week, at an affordable uniform price will continue in Scotland - this was the assurance delivered by the postal regulator, Postcomm, to Scotland Office Minister Anne McGuire."
July 14, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "Economic and fiscal policy minister Heizo Takenaka said Tuesday the government will resume discussions on postal privatization next week and draw up a final report on the issue in September. "We will soon start full-fledged discussions on postal privatization," Takenaka said at a news conference, suggesting that Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy will restart the discussions next week."
July 13, 2004 -- As Information Week has noted, "Memphis, Tenn., may be best known as the home of Elvis Presley and Sun Studios. But in recent years, the Bluff City has been producing a lot more than rock 'n' roll. Today, it's home to one of the most advanced workplaces in the world: the FedEx Institute of Technology. The institute's new facility at the University of Memphis--launched last fall as the result a $23 million public-private partnership between the university and logistics and package-delivery company FedEx Corp.--is home to scientists studying topics from artificial intelligence to biotechnology to supply-chain management. But this site doesn't just play host to great thinking. It endeavors to become the "workplace of the future," where directors also study how the building itself can help promote collaboration and discovery."
July 13, 2004 -- A new study from Andrew Lester & Associates’ PacTrac © research programme covering the Belgian parcels and packages market reinforces the picture of Belgium’s role as a transit and distribution centre for other EU member countries. In economic terms export sales account for more than 80% of Belgium’s GDP, which is one of the highest percentages amongst industrialised economies. More information also can be found at the company's website: www.andrew-lester.com
July 13, 2004 -- According to DM News, "With catalog circulation down and plans in place to open as many as 500 stores in the next several years, Coldwater Creek is shifting into more of a retail-driven company and less of a cataloger. Coldwater Creek will mail 13 million fewer catalogs this year than last, or 104 million. 'The catalog universe is shrinking,' said David Gunter, director of corporate communications and investor relations. 'That's why we're moving away from it.'"
July 13, 2004 -- The Evening Standard (U.K.) has reported that "Powergen has become the first major company to abandon the Royal Mail. The German-owned household energy company has moved contracts worth millions of pounds a year to Business Post, the monopoly-busting company that launched its alternative postal operations two months ago. It is understood that a Vodafone subsidiary has also quit the Royal Mail for Business Post, which expects to sign another six customers soon. Powergen sends out more than 40m letters, invoices and statements a year and is a major coup for Business Post."
July 13, 2004 -- AMEInfo has reported that "Emirates Post's Training and Development Centre recently conducted a training course for 19 employees of Qatar Post in Doha, after developing a special training module based on local market requirements. This is the first time the Centre has ventured outside the UAE to deliver its training courses."
July 13, 2004 -- The Wall Street Journal has reported that "Pitney Bowes Inc., the mailing-equipment and services company, has a team that aggressively seeks out ways to contain ballooning health costs. What Pitney Bowes learned tells the larger story of why health costs keep rising in America: A dysfunctional market creates few incentives for any of its participants to deliver efficient care. In fact, competition among insurers, health-care providers and producers of drugs and equipment can often lead to higher, not lower prices."
July 13, 2004 -- The U.S. Postal Service has unveiled the key findings of an independent study showing a positive relationship between Direct Mail and Internet sales. "The Multi-Channel Catalog Study" demonstrates that catalogs drive Internet sales and benefit retailers by enhancing business growth. Among other findings, the study revealed that 15 percent of consumers who receive a catalog and visit the cataloger's web site make an online purchase. The study was conducted for the Postal Service by comScore Networks, Inc.
July 13, 2004 -- Hoovers has reported that "Nineteen Alaskan air carriers have filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) contending that the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has been shortchanging them as they deliver mail to rural Alaskan communities. In the complaint, the carriers contend that the Postal Service violated DOT rules and imposed its own mileage chart for reimbursements last November. If left alone, the change could have cost the carriers an estimated $335,000 a year. Unlike mail service in the lower 48 states, DOT regulates the rates and terms of service for Alaska and Hawaii."
July 13, 2004 -- The agenda for the next meeting of the USPS Board of Governors has been posted online.
July 12, 2004 -- In a recent email, the National Association of Postal Supervisors' Bruce Moyer informed his members that:
Action on postal reform in the House of Representatives, originally expected to occur this week, has been postponed for at least another week. The House vote may possibly occur during the week of July 19, according to Congressional sources, but House leaders have not yet made a final decision on the timing of the vote. If a House vote on postal reform is delayed beyond the week of July 19, it would mean that House action could not occur until September, with only two weeks remaining before the start of the 5-week Congressional recess, which will stretch until Labor Day. Assuring enough time in the political calendar between now and the adjournment of Congress in early October remains one of the biggest hurdles facing postal reform.
The delay in the scheduling of the House vote is prompted by the need of the bill’s drafters – Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA), Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), Rep. John McHugh (R-NY), and Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL) – for further time to address concerns raised by postal stakeholders and competitors over the way the bill’s groundbreaking approaches toward rate-setting flexibility, as well as the repeal of the Civil Service Retirement System escrow fund and the transfer of payment responsibility for military retirement pensions from USPS back to the Treasury Department.
July 12, 2004 -- According to Business Week, "UPS aims to be the traffic manager for Corporate America." See also the online interview with UPS CEO Mike Eskew.
July 12, 2004 -- From the Federal Times: "The June 28 article, "Budget concerns could sink 'last, best chance' for reform," and the editorial in the same issue, "Deficit arguments against postal bill don't hold water," mischaracterized Senate Budget Committee Chairman Don Nickles' position on the postal reform bill. Nickles has not taken a position on the bill yet, according to his spokeswoman Cara Duckworth on July 9." The question is less as to whether he's taken a position on the bill. It's more a question of whether he's done anything to slow down its expedition.
July 12, 2004 -- The National Association of Major Mail Users (NAMMU) has distributed an important message to its Canadian members. If you do business with Canada Post and worksharing discounts are important to you, you should read and respond to this message.
July 12, 2004 -- The Associated Press has reported that Albert V. Casey, a former chairman of American Airlines, former Postmaster General, and member of the Postal Service's Board of Governors has died. He was 84.
July 12, 2004 -- According to the Financial Times (U.K.), "Royal Mail's bill for failing to provide adequate levels of service to business and retail customers last year will be up to £80m, the postal regulator will shortly announce. Postcomm, the postal services commission, could also impose further penalties in the form of fines for what are understood to be escalating levels of failure by the state-owned postal services company in 2003-04"
July 12, 2004 -- According to CubaNet, "More than 40% of the postal parcels mailed this year have never reached their destination, according to a recent study. Among the missing: a refrigerator, a pair of pants, a cellular phone, a fan. The street name for those who still dare use the Cuban post office's parcel post service: postal fools. Most people here are convinced the merchandise is simply stolen in transit, and in spite of the occasional investigations and firings, the parcels keep getting lost. Complaints are plentiful, but seldom if ever afford satisfaction to the complainant."
July 12, 2004 -- The Taipei Times has reported that "Taiwan has a new industry that is growing quickly: parcel delivery services. Now, two firms are giving Chunghwa Post a run for its money "
July 12, 2004 -- Bloomberg has reported that "Heizo Takenaka's election to Japan's upper house is an endorsement of his reform of the banking system, paving the way for him to take over the privatization of the nation's postal service, which controls 208 trillion yen ($1.93 trillion) of voters' savings."
July 12, 2004 -- The New York Times has reported that "magazine ad pages rose again in June, continuing a rebound that began in May after nearly a year of declines, according to the Publishers Information Bureau in New York. Ad pages rose 3.1 percent in June compared with June 2003, the bureau said, after increasing 4.8 percent in May. The gains follow 11 consecutive months of decline. For the first half of the year, ad pages grew 0.5 percent compared with the period a year earlier. For June, ad pages rose in 6 of 12 major categories. The greatest growth was in financial, insurance and real estate ads, up 30.2 percent. The largest decline came in home furnishings and supplies, down 12.3 percent." More ads, more weight...more weight, more postal income.
July 12, 2004 -- The Independent (U.K.) has reported that "Last post could be brought forward to 9am in some rural areas as part of a Royal Mail efficiency drive. A two-week review of postboxes across Devon and Cornwall may see final collection times brought forward, with fears it could cripple the growing number of small businesses which operate from remote rural barns and cottages. A total of 9,500 postboxes have been classified as "rural" across the nation, because they are located more than 20 minutes away from a town and the review will assess how much and at what time of day these boxes are used. At present, last collection times are between 4pm and 6pm, but following the review this will be moved forward to between 9am and 4pm."
July 11, 2004 -- The Billings Gazette has reported that "Packages being mailed at the low-cost media mail rate through the U.S. Postal Service will get past the counter unopened. But before those hit the mail trucks en route to destinations, many will be opened and searched to ensure all items enclosed meet the strict criteria for media mail. The U.S. Postal Service is seeking to properly charge for higher priced parcel post packages. The crackdown on media mail fraud in Kentucky began June 1 when post offices here and in other areas around the state began requiring that packages be opened, or presented unopened, at the counter for inspection by postal clerks before the 'book rate' was given."
July 11, 2004 -- The Charlottesville Daily Progress has reported that "A trip to the local post office is a way of life for many rural residents, but it’s one that is threatened by the passage of time and the efficiency of consolidation. Such is the case in Graves Mill, a hamlet just east of Shenandoah National Park in Madison County. The U.S. Postal Service is considering officially closing the tiny community’s post office later this year."
July 11, 2004 -- The Journal of Commerce has reported that "FedEx Express on Friday announced the opening of its new Miami Gateway Hub, a $50 million facility aimed at expanding the company's business in markets in Latin America and the Caribbean."
July 11, 2004 -- The Times of India has reported that "Left parties are concerned over the budget proposal to lift the postal department's monopoly in selling small saving schemes like National Savings Certificate, Indira Vikas Patra and Kisan Vikas Patra. The government has decided to allow banks and other institutions to carry out this function along with the postal department."
July 10, 2004 -- According to the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, "The U.S. Postal Service is considering closing two Arlington post offices -- one the main branch serving east Arlington and another in the Great Southwest Industrial Park. In particular, closing the east branch would seem unwise. The decision is only in the study stage, including an English-only postal survey available to customers. That's unfortunate, given that many east Arlington residents speak Spanish and Vietnamese."
July 10, 2004 -- The Jersey Journal has reported that "Residents of a new housing development in Bayonne's Bergen Point shouldn't count on regular mail delivery there - at least for the time being - since the U.S. Postal Service has said that it won't deliver to individual homes in the complex. Instead, the postal service has promised to bring letters and packages to a centralized cluster box, but with no such receptacle available there right now, there's no mail going to the Jack Greene Homes at all, officials said."
July 10, 2004 -- The earnings of postal department has declined significantly as large number of rural population left their habit of writing letters to their near and dear ones. "Village people are using cellular phones for communicating with their relatives which caused negative impact on postal department", said Shamsul Alam, Post Master General in an interview with The Bangladesh Observer.
July 10, 2004 -- The Hull Daily Mail (U.K.) has reported that "Royal Mail officials have come face to face with business leaders who say the postal service is no longer first class. Members of Hull and Humber Chamber of Commerce are complaining their mail deliveries have become later and less reliable since earlier this year when the Royal Mail changed the way it delivered post. They say the new "single daily delivery" system means post is arriving later, and no longer arrives at fixed times."
July 9, 2004 -- KPRC-TV has reported that "Owners of a pit bull are prepared Friday to turn their pet over to the city for quarantine after it mauled a postal carrier in the Heights Thursday, police told News2Houston. The postal worker was delivering mail in the 1100 block of 15½ Street around 11 a.m. when the dog got through an open gate and attacked, according to investigators." The law prohibits shooting the dogs' owner for "terminal stupidity," but this is a breed that shouldn't be allowed to exist. NO letter carrier should be subjected to this kind of threat.
July 9, 2004 -- With today's safety concerns in postal facilities, corporate mail centers, and small mailrooms, the quality of the protective apparel that inbound mail processing, internal distribution & security personnel wear has become more important. Clear, beige, white or blue general-purpose disposable gloves or reusable cloth gloves may not be sufficient to protect against current threats of harmful substances such as Anthrax. JetBlack Gloves are black, allowing users to more easily and quickly identify potentially dangerous light color substances and powders. This can greatly reduce the exposure of postal workers, letter carriers, private sector employees and the general public to these substances.
July 9, 2004 -- Reuters has reported that "Online travel research firm PhoCusWright on Wednesday forecast that more than one-third of U.S. travel would be booked on the Web by 2006, up from 20 percent in 2003. Trips booked on the Web by leisure travelers and business people making their own arrangements will rise 34 percent to $52.8 billion in 2004 from $39.4 billion in 2003, it projected." No more tickets in the mail.
July 9, 2004 -- Ireland Online has reported that "Postal deliveries in Belfast have been seriously disrupted today following the discovery of three letter bombs at the main sorting office in the city. The packages were discovered by workers at the Mallusk sorting centre at various times during the night. Staff returned to work after bomb disposal experts defused the first two devices, but the centre was shut for the day when the third package was discovered."
July 9, 2003 -- On September 21, 2004, join the US Postal Service and remittance industry executives in the first-ever Remittance Mail Symposium. This new symposium offers a comprehensive view of how the changing industry landscape will affect every stage of remittance mail processing. In this full-day symposium, thought-leaders from key stakeholders will discuss issues and recommend strategies for maintaining a cost-effective operation. Four interactive sessions will give you actionable insights into changing customer behavior, maximizing paper-based processing, emerging payment technologies, check truncation and conversion, postal remittance mail processing, and effective partnerships with the U.S. Postal Service.
July 9, 2004 -- Datamonitor has reported that "Seur Espana's recent alliance with GeoPost, the express delivery arm of La Poste, will allow the French company to gain a presence in the Spanish parcel delivery market. For Seur, GeoPost's support should help it achieve its ambitious sales goals. The joint venture could be a useful model for other foreign players seeking to enter the Spanish market. GeoPost, a division of La Poste, acquired a 12.5% stake in Seur Espana in June 2004, after the founder of the Spanish group Justo Yufera had decided to put 21% of the company up for sale. Seur is the leading express delivery company in Spain, with an estimated 17.8% share of the market. The company had revenues of E499 million in 2003, a 9.7% increase on the previous year, and currently has 344 sales points in Spain and Portugal. Seur Espana dominates a market that has been traditionally characterized by a high concentration of domestic players. Whereas in most European countries German giant Deutsche Post World Net is the second player in terms of market share following the local postal operator, in Spain the big transnational logistics players have struggled to seize a significant portion of the market. DHL has made inroads recently though by acquiring the remaining shares in Guipuzcoana EuroExpress."
July 9, 2004 -- The Triad Business Journal has reported that "New Breed Inc., a national distribution services and supply chain consulting firm based in the Triad, has completed the start-up of its latest U.S. Postal Services distribution center in central Virginia."
July 9, 2004 -- Yes, as you'll hear throughout the campaign, Democratic vice presidential hopeful Sen. John Edwards is a "son of a millworker and a postal worker." In addition, Edwards once worked for UPS.
July 9, 2004 -- From the BusinessWire: "Canada Post's epost has announced that EPO Inc. has acquired the BCE Emergis online bill delivery service, webdoxs. epost will combine the existing epost and webdoxs business-to-consumer services to provide Canadians with a single, Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP) service that will be one of the most advanced of its kind in the world. The total purchase price for the webdoxs assets is $14.5 million. Once combined, the enhanced epost service will represent a single and comprehensive electronic document delivery network that connects Canadian businesses and consumers online. Available through the online banking websites of Canada's leading financial institutions, and epost's additional access channels, the combined service will have more than one million registered consumer users, and will be available to the almost 10 million Canadians now banking online. The current epost and webdoxs services will continue to operate until the combined service is launched in approximately six months, and there will be no disruption for consumers using either service."
July 9, 2004 -- Les Echos (France) has reported that "French trade unions CFT, SUD and FO, which represent 69 per cent of French postal workers, have refused to sign an agreement with France's postal operator La Poste which would raise salaries by 1 to 1.7 per cent. CGT is demanding pay parity between contract workers and civil service staff at La Poste, saying that the proposed rises are below price inflation of 2.1 per cent. SUD adds that the ten highest positions at La Poste saw their salaries increase by 17 per cent in 2003. Trade unions CFDT, CFTC and CGC have already signed the agreement."
July 9, 2004 -- BruneiDirect.com has reported that "Occupants of high rise buildings, including flats and commercial buildings in the country are reminded to provide post boxes at specified areas. Awang Haji Azahari bin Mohamad Ali, Acting Post Master General, made the appeal as he launched the Post Box at Kampung Semabat in Temburong District yesterday. He said that providing post boxes is in line with the Post Office Act, Chapter 52, of the Post Office Rule 1993. Speaking at the function, Awang Haji Azahari said the Postal Service Department is always doing its best to improve the existing delivery system and to find more effective ways of upgrading the quality of its service."
July 8, 2004 -- Bloomberg has reported that "James Johnson, the former Fannie Mae chief executive who led the search for John Kerry's vice presidential running mate, may be tapped for a high-level administration post himself should Kerry win in November, history suggests. He counts among his many accomplishments having served Bush as co- chairman of a panel studying the U.S. Postal Service."
July 8, 2004 -- CNET News has reported that "The worldwide subscriber base for broadband is expected to include 325 million subscribers by 2008, up from about 100 million at the end of 2003, according to new research from the Yankee Group."
July 8, 2004 -- The National Association of Postmasters of the United States has announced that "the Office of Personnel Management has approved their request to offer voluntary early retirement (VERA) opportunities for all eligible Postmasters in levels EAS-11 through EAS-18."
July 8, 2004 -- The Chicago Tribune has reported that "About 150 franchisees sued Atlanta-based UPS in Los Angeles in mid-2003. At a hearing July 16, they'll make their case before a superior-court judge, who will decide whether their suit has merit and should go to trial. They have a number of grievances, chiefly that they will lose millions in investments and potential profits if they're forced to change the names of their stores and follow the UPS rules for franchises, which they view as onerous. The suit asks for several hundred millions of dollars in damages and lost profits. Many ex-Mail Boxes Etc. franchisees have no complaints. The new parent company introduced strict store rules: Shipping prices are standardized nationwide, and clerks have to wear brown or black shirts and name tags."
July 8, 2004 -- The Wall Street Journal has reported that "In their new rules restricting state aid to troubled companies, European Union regulators could require governments to open protected markets in exchange for approving some corporate bailouts. The EU announced new guidelines yesterday aimed at forcing companies to pay back state aid. But the initiative doesn't stop at demanding cash or the selloff of assets in return. It also gives governments the alternative of fostering more competition as a way to gain EU approval for aid to companies in distress."
July 8, 2004 -- As DM News has noted, "The adoption of a revised terminal dues system, which countries use to compensate each other for the reciprocal processing of international mail, is one of the events scheduled for the 23rd Congress of the Universal Postal Union. The World Postal Strategy Forum will be held at the event. The Congress will adopt a new World Postal Strategy, a four-year roadmap for postal services and their governments. It will adopt objectives focusing on universal postal service; quality of service and efficiency of the postal network; markets and responding to customer needs; postal reform and sustainable development; and cooperation and interaction among stakeholders. The Congress also will announce the creation of the Consultative Committee, a UPU body that will give a voice to stakeholders not represented by postal operators or regulators. Members will include associations representing groups" such as PostCom.
July 8, 2004 -- PakNews has reported that "Pakistan Post transferred Rs. 10.5 billion into the country from different foreign destinations during last one and a half year through Western Union Online Global Electronic Money Transfer Service, sources said. The money transfer service of Pakistan Post played a vital role in safe transfer of money of expatriate Pakistanis and earned foreign exchange for the country. Sources told APP Wednesday, currently Pakistan Post is offering E-Remittances facility at 250 locations in the country."
July 8, 2004 -- The DM Bulletin (U.K.) has reported that the British "Advertising Association is including spend on direct mail in its Advertising Forecast for the first time, predicting a 4.1% rise in spending on the medium in the UK in 2004. The figure puts the medium behind the overall growth rate for other media of 4.8%, but only includes mailouts and not other aspects of direct marketing, such as door drops and inserts. It is one of the three sectors to be included in the AA's Advertising Forecast for the first time this year, along with online adspend, which is set to show a rise of 53%, and cinema advertising, which could show a 1.4% decline. Other sectors set to perform well are radio and poster advertising, up by 7.8% and 8.7% respectively. Regional newspapers will also see strong growth, according to estimates, rising by 5.9."
July 8, 2004 -- "A New Antitrust Paradox Print Mail Flamingo Industries and the Future of the Postal Service," by Rick Geddes, fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.
July 8, 2004 -- The Hindu Business Line has reported that "the Economic Survey 2003-04 has urged the Indian Government to review the rationale and size of postal subsidy projected at Rs 1,204 crore for the current year. The Survey has said that though the deficit has dropped from Rs 1,550 crore in 2000-01 to Rs 1,364 crore in 2002-03, clarifying the rationale, the mechanism and the size of the subsidy constitute an important policy question at this juncture. All services of the post offices are currently subsidised. User charges in the postal system covers about 78 per cent of the costs."
July 7, 2004 -- The Direct Marketing Association has named John A. Greco Jr., former president of the Yellow Pages Integrated Media Association, to succeed the retiring H. Robert Wientzen as president/CEO, effective August 16. Greco was president/CEO of the Yellow Pages Integrated Media Association from 2000 to 2003. Before that, he served as a marketing executive at R.R. Donnelley & Sons.
July 7, 2004 -- Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. has announced that a subsidiary company has received a contract from the United States Postal Service (USPS) to provide construction management support services for projects throughout the United States. Officials estimate the value of the 10-year indefinite quantity contract, which has a 2-year base period and up to four 2-year option periods, at $275 million. Under the contract, Jacobs supports both the design and construction of USPS facilities. As construction management support services contractor, Jacobs provides total project management in addition to serving as the technical and managerial interface between the USPS and its architectural/engineering firms and construction contractors. The contract covers both new and renovated facilities which may include individual post offices, air mail concourses and facilities, processing and distribution centers, bulk mail centers, and other facilities in the nationwide Postal Service system.
July 7, 2004 -- “Mail has a unique and personal role in people’s lives,” says Rod DeVar, manager of Advertising for the Postal Service in Memo to Mailers. “It is truly the only medium that offers the single, powerful instant when advertisers have a person’s undivided attention to consider their key message....Direct mail works. ” So, that's why the Postal Service will be using television for its latest advertising blitz, right?
2004 -- And...in the latest issue of the Postal Service's publication,
Companion, you can find stories on:
July 7, 2004 -- Information Week has reported that "FedEx Corp.'s acquisition of retail copy-shop chain Kinko's earlier this year is showing results. The courier and logistics company last week unveiled digital document-printing services to be offered via its FedEx Kinko's outlets, as well as plans to tie information about orders into an upcoming platform that will pull together data on clients and their shipments across all FedEx operating companies. FedEx later this summer will launch File Print FedEx Kinko's, a service to give customers a virtual printer connection from a PC to any U.S. FedEx Kinko's print center. Kinko's customers previously could create print-ready files from a PC, but the new offering adds capabilities, such as receiving a PDF version of the layout format to approve and sending one file to print at multiple locations."
July 7, 2004 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal) has reported that:
Don't be satisfied with a less than complete report on the courier, express, and postal market in Europe. Get your subscription to CEP News, today..
July 7, 2004 -- FedEx Corp. this week launched a new advertising campaign to redefine the business-services marketplace through its recently acquired and rebranded FedEx Kinko's Office and Print Centers. The campaign focuses on FedEx Kinko's one-of-a-kind offering of the industry's broadest range of business services with many locations open 24 hours, seven days a week. The campaign also highlights FedEx Kinko's significantly lower shipping prices, including prices of up to 35 percent less than The UPS Store.
July 7, 2004 -- AMEInfo has reported that "Emirates Post has expanded its network of post-offices to 76, with the opening of two new post offices on Jumeirah Road and Al Aweer this week, to meet the rising demand for postal and retail services in these areas."
July 7, 2004 -- According to the Western Morning News (U.K.), "The Royal Mail was under fire for "another attack on rural areas" yesterday after it emerged that final collection times for Westcountry villages could be brought forward to 9 o'clock in the morning. Anthony Steen, Conservative MP for Totnes, said the changes would leave people in rural areas with a 'third class'postal service."
July 7, 2004 -- Stockhouse.com has reported that "activePDF, Inc., a leading provider of PDF conversion and development tools, and AuthentiDate, Inc., a subsidiary of AuthentiDate Holding Corp. (NASDAQ: ADAT), the technical provider of the United States Postal Service Electronic Postmark(R) (USPS EPM(R)), announced today that the USPS EPM has been integrated to work with activePDF Toolkit(TM). activePDF Toolkit is a scalable, programmable, COM object that allows dynamic creation and manipulation of PDF files."
July 6, 2004 -- If you haven't yet seen the latest issue of Business Week, you should. It'll give you an idea of the direction in which advertising and marketing is heading. Gee...do you think the Postal Service knows? Better than that...do you think the Postal Service cares?
July 6, 2004 -- If you're willing to read a little between the lines, today's headline story in The Hill should signal that it doesn't look as if postal reform will make it to the Senate floor before Congress recesses for the election. Heck, it may not make it before Congress adjourns sine die. And if that article didn't wake you up to smell the coffee, try this one.
July 6, 2004 -- PostCom would like to welcome its newest member:
Direct Mail Jobs, LLC of Newington, CT, an executive recruiting firm serving the direct mail and direct marketing industry, which will be represented by Julie Abraham, CEO.
July 6, 2004 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "The rate of growth in the US third party logistics market has continued to slow according to the latest survey by leading industry analysts, Armstrong & Associates. The research contained in its Who’s Who in Logistics? report shows that the market grew by 8.2%, in 2003 the lowest rate in the last five years. However, overall the compound annual growth rate between 1998 and 2003 was still in excess of 14% due to the strong increases in market size in the late 1990s."July 6, 2004 -- The Scotsman (U.K.) has reported that:
July 6, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "Japan Post said Monday a total of 640 million yen in cash was lost by mistake in its transactions across Japan in fiscal 2003 through March this year. The public corporation said there were 215,300 transactions in which cash went missing, with 12 of them involving losses of 1 million yen or more. The largest single loss was 3 million yen. In most cases, postal clerks miscounted the amount of money being withdrawn by depositors in over-the-counter transactions and handed over more money than they should have, Japan Post said."
July 6, 2004 -- Guangdong News has reported that "the State Postal Bureau has paid a Beijing folk artist 88,000 yuan (US$10,600) in damages for copyright infringement. The bureau made the payment seven months after the Beijing Higher People's Court made the order. The ruling was enforced by the Beijing No. 1 Intermediate People's Court earlier this week, reported Thursday's China Daily. The postal bureau and its affiliated Postage Stamp Printing Bureau were also forced to apologize to Bai Xiu'e, whose paper-cuts were used on their stamps in 2001 without her permission. "
July 6, 2004 -- The Bradford Telegraph & Argus (U.K.) has reported that "Bradford Chamber of Commerce today led calls for the Royal Mail to rethink its proposals for a new "size-based" pricing system based on size as well as weight. Firms in the region have claimed the move will add costs, increase workload and reduce efficiency of businesses, especially smaller ones. Postcomm, the regulator for Royal Mail, is consulting about the proposals and is asking for comments before July 27. Royal Mail has said it wants to charge more for large but light items and less for small, heavy ones. The Bradford Chamber of Commerce said it believed the move would increase its postal costs by nearly 20 per cent and urged firms to respond."
July 5, 2004 -- According to postal commentator Gene Del Polito, "mail is still the only medium that can allow an advertiser or marketer to reach his or her audience, regardless of whether the audience is undifferentiated or particular regarding its geographic, demographic, or psychographic characteristics. Mail's great strength comes largely from the tools that have been developed over the years that allow a marketer or advertiser to select his or her target audience more wisely. So before you go off and devote an ever larger share of advertising dollars to some other medium, make absolutely sure you have all the needed data readily in hand to show that the commitment to mail is no longer the smart advertising choice."
July 5, 2004 -- The Pacific Daily News has reported that "the U.S. Postal Service's three-day express mail service hasn't been available to people sending mail to Guam. The previous system was not able to deliver mail to Guam in three days because of the International Date Line and logistical issues. Airplanes, which deliver express mail to Guam, were only making trips to the island three times a week. This prevented mail from reaching the island in three days. (Express Mail) Custom Design service is now the quickest way to receive mail. Priority Mail, which is still an option, costs less but takes longer to arrive on Guam -- about eight to 12 days." Yes, folks, America's day begins at Guam. So much for "everyone, everywhere, everyday." That was always a stupid thing to say when knowing full well it was untrue and distorted an understanding of the postal system as it exists today.
July 5, 2004 -- Reuters has reported that the shares of postal darling "Netflix Inc. were off 10 percent in Friday morning trading on disappointment over the online DVD renter's second-quarter subscriber growth. the shortfall was the result of customer turnover, or churn, to competing services such as one offered by Wal-Mart Stores Inc. rather than a drop-off in overall demand. "
July 5, 2004 -- Techweb has reported that "Rampell Software's Did They Read It? e-mail service has been declared illegal by CNIL, the French data protection authority. According to CNIL (Commission Nationale De L'Infotmatique Et Des Libertés), the service is unacceptable under French privacy legislation enacted in 1978. French subscribers to the service risk a five-year prison sentence and a sizeable fine. Did They Read It? allows subscribers to track any e-mails they send. The software tells users when recipients received their message, when the message was opened, how long it remained open, how many times it was viewed, if it was forwarded to others, and if those recipients opened the message. The service will work with any ISP or e-mail service, according to Rampell, including Web-based e-mail services such as Yahoo Mail and Hotmail. The tracking features are invisible to the e-mail recipient; only the sender has access to tracking information. America Online's e-mail client can tell users when other AOL members have opened messages. The Microsoft Outlook e-mail client has a return receipt feature that allows users to see that other Outlook users have received their message."
July 5, 2004 -- NewsFactor Network has reported that "Delta Air Lines says it plans to use disposable radio tags to track luggage at domestic airports -- a two-year investment of close to US$25 million. Delta will not realize significant labor savings from this investment. They are doing it because it will improve the customer experience. From a service perspective, the fact that they can say they will never ever lose track of a bag must be worth it to them." Gee...no labor savings but an improvement in customer service and satisfaction. Anyone told the Postal Service about this concept?
July 5, 2004 -- Here's an item that has nothing to do with postal other than the lesson one monopolist (USPS) should learn from another (Microsoft). eWeek magazine has reported that "as Microsoft enters more competitive markets and faces increased grumbling, the company is trying what—for it—is an unusual tack: paying more attention its customers."
July 5, 2004 -- Also from eWeek is the following: "Online retailers are trying to bring in new customers by allowing them to pay for goods with some old-fashioned methods—checks and invoicing."
July 5, 2004 -- TPG has announced that:
July 5, 2004 -- AFX Europe has reported that "Transport company Seur expects its international operations to account for 14 pct of total revenue in one year, up from 7 pct currently, thanks to its alliance with La Poste, El Pais said"
July 5, 2004 -- The Daily Yomiuri (Japan) has reported that "None of the political parties have bothered to seriously address one important issue in their campaigns for the upcoming House of Councillors election--the government's plan to privatize the state-run postal services. This issue should be a major focus of debate ahead of the July 11 upper house election."
July 5, 2004 -- MENAFN.com has reported that "The e-resident facility that allows expatriates to renew residence permits of spouses and children through the special counters at the Doha General Post Office and the Q-Post branch at the LuLu Hypermarket will resume shortly, Ali Mohammad Al Ali, chairman of the General Postal Corporation, said here yesterday. These services had been suspended since 10 days due to for upgradation of the e-resident system offered by Qatar's e-government."
July 5, 2004 -- Engadget is carrying a report that "Sharp claims it will have a paper-thin (i.e., under 1mm) reader in shops by 2007. It’s working on a colour 'LCD paper' that doesn’t need a light source, apparently by upping the amount of light the paper reflects. Sharp already has tie-ups with 7000 content providers for the Zaurus Town site it offers to users of its handhelds, so it sounds like it could slide into the e-book (or rather e-newspaper and e-manga) market with relative ease. It’s instructive that Sony is apparently soon to bring two Japanese national newspapers into the content fold for its Librie e-book reader, too."
July 4, 2004 -- According to the Los Angeles Times, "Howard Spanier doesn't care what brown can do for him. He's content with the red, white and blue of his bustling Mail Boxes Etc. outlet in Malibu. Spanier and about 150 fellow franchisees sued UPS in mid-2003. At a hearing July 16, they'll make their case before a Superior Court judge in Los Angeles who will decide whether their suit has merit and should go to trial. They have a number of grievances, chiefly that they will lose millions of dollars in investments and potential profits if they're forced to change names and follow Atlanta-based UPS' rules for franchises, which they view as onerous. The suit asks for several hundred millions of dollars in damages and lost profits, setting no specific number."
July 4, 2004 -- According to Bucks Free Press (U.K.), many of the small post offices slated for closing really don't want to be saved.
July 4, 2004 -- "How does United Parcel Service of America—a $33.5 billion logistics hub of commerce that already owns a fleet of airplanes, moves 13.6 million packages daily, and serves nearly 8 million customers a day—grow its business?" asks Optimize. "By helping customers manage their supply chains."
July 4, 2004 -- Le Monde (France) has reported that "Patrick Devedjian, the French minister for industry, has commenced the necessary process for changing responsibilities within the postal service in France. The current system means that La Poste, the French postal service operator, is not accountable for ordinary mail that is lost in the postal system."
July 4, 2004 -- AMEInfo has reported that "Ministry of Information and Communications Technology (MoICT), in accordance with its mandate, completed a draft of the first Jordanian public policy statement for issuing postal stamps." See also the Jordan Times.
July 3, 2004 -- The U.S. Postal Service has posted the following on its web site:
In January 2002, the United States Postal Service announced an agreement with Royal Mail to use their pan European delivery network to deliver Global Express Mail and Air Parcel Post to 23 countries.
This agreement formally expires on December 31, 2004 and the Postal Service and Royal Mail have mutually agreed to let the contract expire on that date.
The Postal Service will revert to the individual Foreign Postal Administration for delivery of these two products in each country that Royal Mail's subsidiary, GLS, served effective January 1, while GLS will continue to focus on its core product: Business to Business deliveries utilizing commercial customs clearance.
Royal Mail, through its United Kingdom (UK) parcel arm, Parcelforce, will remain the Postal Service's delivery provider for the UK to deliver parcels in that country.
It's a good decision. The GLS program has brought nothing but heartache to those American companies that have used it.
July 3, 2004 -- Business Week has reported that "For marketers, the evolution from mass to micromarketing is a fundamental change driven as much by necessity as opportunity. America today is a far more diverse and commercially self-indulgent society than it was in the heyday of the mass market. The country has atomized into countless market segments defined not only by demography, but by increasingly nuanced and insistent product preferences. The almost-universal audience assembled long ago by network television and augmented by the other mass media is fragmenting at an accelerating rate. The mass media's decline is an old story in many respects; prime-time network ratings and newspaper circulation have been sliding since the 1970s. What's new is that the proliferation of digital and wireless communication channels is spreading the mass audience of yore ever-thinner across hundreds of narrowcast cable-TV and radio channels, thousands of specialized magazines, and millions of computer terminals, video-game consoles, personal digital assistants, and cell-phone screens. The fading of the age of mass marketing poses a threat to the traditional mass media and their heavily ad-dependent business models."
July 3, 2004 -- Les Echos (France) has reported that "La Poste, the French national postal services group, cut more than 3,700 jobs in 2003, according to employee representatives. The group's workforce fell from 292,573 people in 2002 to 288,820 in 2003, a reduction of 3,753. According to union SUD-PTT, La Poste has eliminated 6,944 posts in two years, and recruitments have fallen by 27.5 per cent in the same period."
July 2, 2004 -- As Catalog Success has noted, "The postal reform bills circulating in Congress at press time (early June) should offer some relief for mailers and the USPS, but of course, they're not panaceas for all that ails. However, the House version of the postal reform bill would, if enacted, simplify the rate-setting process; enable officials to levy emergency price increases due to extraordinary circumstances (e.g., anthrax attacks via the mail) and enter into negotiated service agreements with mailers; and transfer the military retiree pension obligations of USPS employees back to the U.S. Department of the Treasury. No doubt these and other provisions would help the USPS."
July 2, 2004 -- Traffic World has reported that "International air freight forwarders see a lucrative new market they are clamoring to get into. No, it's not China. It's the United States."
July 2, 2004 -- Transport Intelligence has reported that "After a period of consolidation following a hectic acquisition schedule, GeoPost, the subsidiary of French post office La Poste, has re-commenced its expansion plans. Already this year it has made acquisitions as far afield as Spain and Russia. It has now made a purchase to improve its service in Belgium. Meanwhile DPWN pulled out of talks with the Irish post office over its loss making parcels subsidiary, SDS. However it could still be in the running to buy parts of it should it be broken up."
July 2, 2004 -- As the Financial Times (U.K.) has noted, "Competition could intensify in the UK residential telecommunications markets following an announcement by the Post Office that it will offer residential telephone services from next year through a deal with Cable and Wireless."
July 2, 2004 -- DM News has reported that "Canada Post Corp. begins distributing a new Change of Address Notification form this week that the Canadian mailing industry hopes will balance privacy issues and business needs."
July 2, 2004 -- According to Media Week (U.K.), "Magazine publishers have won a significant victory against the Royal Mail after plans to double postage prices if titles were considered too stiff to fit through letterboxes were shelved this week."
July 2, 2004 -- The Insurance Journal has reported that "the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America is one of a number of organizations who have formed a coalition calling for reforms to the U.S. Postal Service. "
July 2, 2004 -- Business Mailers Review has reported that:
Business Mailers Review is published biweekly by Sedgwick Publishing Co. This is one of the best postal newsletters you'll find published in this country. There's much more to each issue than the teaser you see here. For subscription information, check the BMR web site.
July 2, 2004 -- The latest edition of First Logic's Mail Automation eNews is available online.
July 2, 2004 -- The Business Courier has reported that "Cincinnati City Manager Valerie Lemmie today submitted a proposal to Cincinnati City Council that would offer United Parcel Service a tax incentive package to expand and improve its facility on Gest Street."
July 2, 2004 -- According to the Toledo Blade, "United Parcel Service plans to make $2.8 million in equipment improvements and add several new jobs at its 1550 Holland Road location in Maumee. Maumee and the Lucas County Commissioners agreed to give UPS a 75 percent tax abatement on property improvements for the next 10 years. The company must make an agreement with Maumee City Schools and Penta Career Center to make payments in lieu of taxes. UPS plans to add up to 10 full-time and 25 part-time positions at the upgraded facility."
July 2, 2004 -- WNNE-TV has reported that "some residents and businesses in Lebanon went without mail for three days last week because of Postal Service staffing shortages. Postal officials said the shortage was due in part to carriers being out on vacation and because of injuries and illnesses. Last week, the remaining carriers decided to work no more than the 60 hours specified in their contract."
July 2, 2004 -- The National Postal Forum has announced the re-launch of the Forum’s Web site (www.npf.org) with improved navigation and organizational features focusing on customer services and easier access to information.
July 2, 2004 -- From the PR Newswire: RR Donnelley & Sons Company's DistributionOptimizer(SM) service continues to provide significant postal savings for RR Donnelley's magazine publishing customers by leveraging RR Donnelley's scope and scale to simplify the distribution of periodicals and create postal efficiencies.
July 1, 2004 -- CEP News (Courier-Express-Postal) has reported that:
July 1, 2004 -- In his most recent DM News perspective, postal commentator Cary Baer noted that "even a casual reading of the bills makes clear that the new Postal Regulatory Commission would be given the responsibility to determine the regulations, including rates and service, under which the postal service will operate. Consistent with that responsibility, both bills state that 'commissioners shall be chosen solely on the basis of their technical qualifications, professional standing and demonstrated expertise in economics, accounting, law or public administration.' However, the Senate recently approved an individual who, though quite honorable, does not appear to meet these criteria. Until the USPS and the mailing industry fight to receive the respect due a $900 billion industry, the future of the postal service will remain in doubt. "
July 1, 2004 -- BTNSN.com (U.K.) has reported that "Servista, the leading provider of outsourced customer care and billing services for the home services market, has won the contract to support the Post Office’s® entry into the UK residential fixed line market. Servista will carry out all back office processing for the new service, from managing the sign-up and provisioning of new customers to tracking and billing their service usage, and will also provide customer management systems and customer self service websites. The Post Office® has also signed deals with Cable & Wireless (network provider) and Inkfish (call centre provider), who, together with Servista will provide the key elements of the new service, to be known as Post Office® HomePhone."
July 1, 2004 -- The Financial Services Roundtable has sent House Leadership a letter urging them to schedule floor time for H.R. 4341, the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act before the August recess.
July 1, 2004 -- AllAfrica.com has reported that "The World Bank has financed a study of the Mozambican postal sector, the preliminary results of which are currently being debated in Maputo by post office officials and other interested parties. The study cost 300,000 dollars, and was undertaken by the New Zealand-based company, Transend Worldwide. The intention is to point a path out of the current critical situation of the Mozambican post office, characterised by a shortage of money and equipment, and delays in paying wages. Last year, the Ministry of Transport and Communications appointed a new board of directors with the aim of reshaping the post office, and overcoming serious problems resulting from years of mismanagement."
July 1, 2004 -- Did you know?....CIO Today has reported that "some 99 percent of all spam originates from foreign countries, according to a study conducted by Commtouch, a provider of anti-spam software. Not surprisingly, though, the recipients of these largely unwanted messages are in the U.S."
July 1, 2004 -- Japan Today has reported that "the Tokyo High Court on Wednesday ruled against the disciplinary dismissal of seven postal workers over a labor dispute in 1979, overturning a lower court ruling. They were among 55 postal workers who were fired for a labor slowdown that the Japan Postal Workers' Union orchestrated in protest at a government drive to boost postal service productivity. The slowdown affected delivery of New Year's cards."
July 1, 2004 -- The Journal of Commerce has reported that "FedEx Express will begin operating regular flights with its own aircraft into Central Japan International Airport when the facility opens in February 2005 as part of its overall plan to enhance services in Japan. The move will connect the Chubu region with 215 countries through FedEx's global Advertisement distribution network. It will be the third Japanese airport FedEx flies to, following Tokyo Narita International Airport and Kansai International Airport."
July 1, 2004 -- Traffic World has reported that: