Ofcom is investigating potential corruption amongst parcel services

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The UK communications regulator Ofcom, which oversees practices and providers in the post and parcels sector, has revealed it is currently investigating possible corrupt practices in relation to the carriage of business parcels in Britain.

It’s by no means clear which organisations are currently under investigation although we expect some details on that to emerge in the weeks and months to come. But it does come hot on the heels of a recent ruling that found that Royal Mail had misused its dominant position to unfairly penalise Whistl, one of its merchant customers. You can read more about that story here: Royal Mail fined record £50m by Ofcom.

Ofcom opened the investigation last week on the 13th of August but have only just revealed it’s underway. You can read the official information here.

Ofcom has opened an investigation under the Act into suspected market sharing and/or customer allocation arrangements between operators in the business parcel delivery sector in the UK and/or European Union.

The purpose of the investigation is to establish whether there has been one or more infringements of the Chapter I prohibition and/or Article 101 of the TFEU by operators in the business parcel delivery sector. In the first phase of the investigation, Ofcom will gather further information using its powers under the Act. The analysis of this information will help inform Ofcom’s view on how to proceed further with the investigation. This investigation is at an early stage and we have not reached a view on whether there has been a breach of competition law.
– Ofcom

Last week, Ofcom issued its biggest ever sanction: £50 million. Royal Mail will, reportedly, be appealing the ruling. But Whistl thinks it deserves compensation for the business it lost as the result of the legal infraction. Nothing can be resolved until the appeal is heard and that will likely take some time. It will be interesting to discover which companies this new investigation relates to.

2 Responses

  1. Parcelforce has repeatedly refused to provide us with a business account on the grounds that they have an “agreement” with Parcel2Go to “not take away their customers” and for that reason since we are already using Parcelforce services via P2Go, they’re “not allowed” to take us on because of such an agreement.

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