https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/ ... t-12553479
Results out today showed the postal giant dished out a record £231million in dividends last year
Royal Mail payouts to shareholders have hit £1billion since it was sold off, despite profits slumping by more than third.
Results out today showed the postal giant dished out a record £231million in dividends last year.
The bulk of the bonanza, equivalent to £630,000 a day, will go to hedge funds and City investors.
Rebecca Long-Bailey, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary, said: “It is scandalous Royal Mail is paying out millions to shareholders despite falling profits.
“This is yet another example of unchecked corporate greed.”
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Last year’s dividends take the amount paid to shareholders since the controversial privatisation to around £1billion.
The 2013 sell-off sparked fury, with ministers being accused of off-loading the taxpayers’ stake on the cheap.
Today’s accounts showed revenues topped £10billion last year.
But profits fell by around 37% from £335million to £212million, mainly due to a one-off pension hit.
That did not stop the company upping its annual dividend payout and promising to keep doing so.
It will benefit Royal Mail workers and small shareholders, who own about 20% of the firm, but the vast majority is controlled by big investors.
Its largest shareholder is fund manager BlackRock, which hired ex-Tory Chancellor George Osborne as a £650,000-a-year adviser. It is in line for a near £13million dividend.
The accounts also showed Royal Mail made £100million from selling off mail centres and delivery offices.
Last year it missed its target of delivering 93% of first-class letters the next day, blaming this on reasons including severe weather.
Ms Long-Bailey said: “Royal Mail was sold off on the cheap. The next Labour government will reverse the privatisation to ensure customers get a better deal.”
Royal Mail said £1.8billion had been invested in the company since privatisation, and the same amount paid into workers’ pensions.