Post offices Looking to buy a post office?
A Licensed Post Office (LPO) is a privately owned post office which is operated under contract (licence) to Australia Post.
There are almost 3000 Licensed Post Offices in Australia. They are privately owned and operated, and are often operated in conjunction with another business such as general store, pharmacy, Lotto agency, newsagency. They vary from very small offices, usually in remote rural areas, to large suburban outlets. Most LPOs have access to Australia Post’s electronic point-of-sale (EPOS) system. Small LPOs which are manually operated provide limited banking services.
LPOs provide their customers with access to a wide range of products and services including postal products and services, billpay, banking, money orders, postal packaging and mail services. Most post offices also provide products and services such as stationery, greeting cards, phone cards, photocopying, facsimile, small gifts and so on. PO box services are available at most LPOs and customers can arrange for mail redirection. LPOs are often open extended hours.
Licensees are not Australia Post employees, but have a Licence with Australia Post to operate the LPO. They provide their own premises, set-up and staff, and are paid fees, commissions and discounts for work performed.
Buying an LPO
LPO sales are often advertised in weekend newspapers, under the Businesses For Sale column. Some are sold privately by the vendor while others are sold through an Agent.
The purchase price will vary according to many factors, including:
- Location – suburban, regional, country
- Premises – owned or leased
- Electronic or manual operation
- Size of any in conjunction business
- Income from post office part of the business
- Income from the other part of the business
- Size of premises
- Condition of premises
- Contents of disclosure document
- Number of PO Boxes let
There is no territory with a post office licence, nor is there a term to the Licence. A Licensee can sell the post office licence at his/her discretion, subject to Australia Post approving the incoming Licensee.
Any prospective purchaser should check their eligibility to be a post office Licensee with Australia Post prior to purchase. As well, Australia Post expects certain skills and standards from Licensees, including ability to relate to customers and to retain and build up the retail business. Trustworthiness, reliability and the ability to keep customers’ business confidential are essential.
Australia Post will provide training to the incoming Licensee, including training with Australia Post’s technology where applicable. Post office counter staff are the face of the post office and high standards are expected of them.
Franchising Code of Conduct
Licensees are also franchisees, and are thus covered by the Franchising Code of Conduct. A disclosure document must be provided to prospective purchasers by Australia Post and the vendor. Purchasers should acquaint themselves with the Franchising Code of Conduct, a copy of which is available through the ACCC.
POAAL is there to help you
When you sign your purchase contract, please contact POAAL and we will arrange to send you a membership kit, a membership application form and some insurance information. We can help arrange the mandatory Public Liability insurance for you. You can complete an online expression of interest, download an Expression of Interest form and send it to us or ring our National Office on 03-96544533.
Q: How is the price of an LPO calculated?
A: The purchase price is determined by many factors, including financial performance, location, in-conjunction business and other factors. If you have questions about the price of a specific LPO, consider seeking professional advice.
Q: Can I set up my own Licensed Post Office?
A: No, however Australia Post does occasionally set up new LPOs. You can express an interest via the Australia Post website.
If you’d like more information from POAAL on buying a Licensed Post Office, please fill out the form below and click “Submit”.
- Bags and trays pro forma
- Carded articles pro forma
- Carded parcels storage advice
- Mail Management Fee
- PO Box installation
- Stock delivery issues
- Industrial relations
- Franchising Code of Conduct
- LPO assignment letters
- LiPOMS Data Collection Report
- LPO Arrangements Payment Scheme
- Looking to buy a post office?
Become a POAAL member
POAAL provides support and services for Licensees and Franchisees (Post Office Owners), Mail & Parcel Contractors and Couriers.