With traditional business dwindling, Postal Department looking for new avenues
The Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and E-commerce companies can soon will be able to tie-up with the India Post, which spread across 1.50 lakh locations across India, to reach out to their customers/potential customers.
The India Post, is being modernised with an investment of over Rs 4,900 crore, which will bring all the Postoffices under one net and all the operations will be computerised.
On the backdrop of the declining traditional businesses, including transaction of letters and post cards, the India Post is now planning to take a new avatar, with a budgetary support of over Rs 4,900 crore from the Union Government.
“In the recent years post offices have started offering various services including courier, parcel and others as the traditional businesses of Post Offices, like letter and post cards were declining”, said the Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram, after inaugurating India Post's first ATM in the country at Chennai today.
In the interim budget the Department was allocated Rs 4,909 crore totake up various initiatives, including bringing all the post officesunder the Core Banking Solution (CBS), setting up new ATMs andothers.
To a question on what kind of services the post offices can possibly offer after the complete IT transformation, Padmini Gopinath,secretary, Postal Department said, “literally every second or third village got post office in the country. If somebody wants to buy acar and if we have tie-up with a company, we will collect theapplication forms so that the car company can come to know what wouldbe the market demand. How much should I produce. This is something wecan do.”
Theother area could be E-commerce, the industry need some body who candeliver in rural areas. “We are ready to do, we have asked for application. We want to bring allthe centres (post offices) to come on board with the technology, thenwe will look into it. By June it will be ready,” she said.
The Department of Posts got around 1.50 lakh post offices across thecountry and 80 per cent of it are in rural areas. The Department ison par with courier in one side and banks on the other sides. “Postal Department is the only one, which does both the businesses,” said Padmini Gopinath, who noted the Department got around Rs 28,000-30,000 crore deposits under its banking system.
So far about 64 lakh accounts, worth Rs 11,840 crore, were migrated to Finacle inthe last two months, which represents 60 officers. It may be noted pilot-in-pilot rollout of CBS was implemented in Greams Road PostOffice in Chennai on December 16, 2013.Commenting on ATM roll outs, she said, Chennai was the first one get the Department's ATM and four more ATMs are ready for operations, in Delhi and Mumbai.
The Department is proposed to install 1,000 ATMs across the country in 2014 and add another 1800 ATMs in 2015.
“We are a bank which collects small savings unlike the commercial banks,we only do savings and our customers are small people,” she said. She noted, all public and private sector banks put together there are about 50,000 locations, but post office are located across 150,000 locations and that is our USP and these Post Offices also goto bligation to reach out to the last miles across the country.
Source : http://www.business-standard.com/