A huge damper for small entrepreneurs. Despite the large crowds caused by the lockdown at parcel deliverers, PostNL recovers its compensation for retailers who remain open as a pickup point. Earlier, the listed company reimbursed stores for a maximum of eight hours, but this month PostNL retailers announced that this will be reduced to six hours. As a reason, the company indicates the “decrease in the bustle”, according to a letter sent to entrepreneurs by the company. Entrepreneurs do not understand anything.
The letter has arrived at De Cceit. “PostNL has announced to reduce the number of hours reimbursed to entrepreneurs with a parcel service point from eight to six hours and give the reason: the ‘quiet’ period. Of course, this is not at all the case, on the contrary, this is making a profit on the back and at the expense of entrepreneurs!” , an angry entrepreneur emailed this newspaper.
The postal company has, of course, been asked for a response, but it has not yet given it.
“This means that I earn about €40 less per day, from the previous €160”, says a franchisee from bookstore chain Bruna who wants to remain anonymous to news agency ANP, who received the message as well. “But it is above all that they announce this unilaterally. There has been no consultation.”
According to the entrepreneur, it is still busy with packages delivered by PostNL to the book- and magazine store. According to her, it is about three containers a day, so that the number of hours reimbursed is, in her view, a way for PostNL to increase profits.
The delivery company came up with the fee of €19 per hour, excluding VAT, for retailers who remain open as a pick-up point. In doing so, the company wanted to persuade book and cigar stores to remain active as a PostNL point, even though they are not allowed to sell anything from their own range. Audax, the group covered by Bruna, Primera and AKO, refused to keep its own stores open. Many franchisees from the same chains chose to maintain their collection point.
PostNL states that in the first weeks after 15 December, when the stricter lockdown went, it was much busier because of the holiday period than in January. At the same time, a spokeswoman acknowledges that PostNL still handles much more orders than in January 2020. “We are now in calmer waters. We were able to extend this allowance, but we decided to adjust it somewhat to the situation in which we are now.”
To keep the collection points open, PostNL expects to lose €13.5 million until February 9. “Retailers are in a difficult situation, but they are also about decent sums,” says a lady.