Whistl chief executive Nick Wells has accused Royal Mail of trying to “strangle” its rival out of the end-to-end delivery market, on the back of the postal firm’s decision to mothball its final mile service.
The move followed the collapse of a Whistl funding deal with Lloyds Bank’s private equity arm, LDC, earlier this month.
The Dutch-owned postal company, formerly TNT Post, was heavily reliant on the investment to pay for the expansion of its delivery service but has already suspended its existing end-to-end operation running in London, Liverpool and Manchester.
In an interview with The Sunday Times, Wells (pictured) claimed Royal Mail’s proposed price increases for final mile services put too much pressure on Whistl’s operation, meaning it had to go down the end-to-end delivery route to save money.
He said: “Choice is good for any market. We believe it would be good for the consumer and the industry and Royal Mail – it would have acted as a catalyst and efficiency. But the challenge we were met with was Royal Mail’s aggressive behaviour, which led to a certain amount of regulatory uncertainty.
“We have a fairly complex relationship with Royal Mail. We compete with them but we are also their biggest customer. What I didn’t like was their behaviour to try to strangle us on end-to-end.”
Wells insisted the end-to-end operation remains a viable, profitable business and is only under review as the firm attempts to bring in new investors.
In its defence Royal Mail, led by Moya Greene (pictured) insisted: “Whistl’s complaint is unfounded. We suspended the proposed price changes. They were never implemented.”
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