Home Money Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch to hold talks with Royal Mail suitor

Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch to hold talks with Royal Mail suitor

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Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch

Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch will meet “Czech sphinx” Daniel Kretinsky as he continues his £3.6bn investment into Royal Mail.

Badenoch will hold talks with the tycoon, who is about to become the first foreign owner of the 500-year-old company. The meeting is scheduled for the middle of next week, Sky News reported.

Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch

Royal Mail’s parent company, International Distribution Services (IDS), accepted an offer from billionaire investment firm EP Group last month after it made a series of commitments, including promises of jobs and six-day service throughout the UK.

It also agreed not to demerge Royal Mail’s parent company IDS, which includes the European parcel business GLS, for at least three years and to maintain Royal Mail’s universal service obligation (USO) and UK headquarters for five years. .

Last week, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt said regulators should look “very carefully” at the billionaire’s five-year commitments.

Kretinsky, who is already the largest shareholder in IDS and owns significant stakes in Sainsbury’s and West Ham United, met the Communication Workers Union (CWU) this week.

Dave Ward, general secretary of the CWU, which represents around 100,000 Royal Mail workers, said: “We made it very clear that the EP Group’s current commitments are neither strong enough nor long-lasting enough.”

Since agreeing to buy the company, Kretinsky has hinted that he would seek to reform the USO. IDS shareholders will vote on the deal at the annual general meeting on September 25.

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