Newly published figures from Royal Mail reveal an increase in revenues for the six-month period ending on September 29th 2013 – throughout which it was still under public ownership.
Revenues grew by a modest 2% year-on-year, leading to before-tax profits of £233 million, all of which is broadly in line with expectations.
Moya Greene, chief executive officer of Royal Mail plc, said: “The combination of increasing EBITDA and moderating investment spend underpins value creation for our shareholders.”
Interestingly, revenues from letters continues to decline, but was offset by strong growth in revenue from parcels, which now account for the majority (51%) of the Group’s total revenue.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, critics of the privatisation of the postal service flagged up its profitability while still under public ownership as evidence that it should not have been sold off.
Billy Hayes, general secretary of the Communication Workers Union, said: “A profitable, successful and well-loved institution was flogged on the cheap when these latest figures show it was healthy and in good hands.
“The government’s arguments continue to crumble; these profits should be public money, not paid out to hedge funds and city institutions in dividends.”
However, the Group still carries net debts of £723 million, a decrease of £183 million from March 31st 2013.
On October 15th, all loans previously provided to Royal Mail by HM Government were refinanced and replaced, with a forecasted blended interest rate of around 3.5% per year for the lifetime of the refinanced loans.