Initially a joint initiative between Computershare, Salmat (which is in the process of selling its stake to FujiFilm) and Zumbox the service will be free for consumers, while organisations using the service to reach customers will be charged around 15 cents for the digital delivery of bills or other official correspondence. (Companies using the service will still be liable for the business process fees that they traditionally pay for the generation and distribution of bills or notices – but the delivery cost will drop from around 60 cents for a paper bill to 15 cents for a digitally delivered bill or notice.)
Digital Post Australia also intends to launch digital post apps for iPhones, iPads and Android devices when the service goes on general release later this year.
Recently appointed CEO, Randy Dean, who has relocated from Zumbox in San Francisco to take on the local management role, said he hoped to attract 25-30 per cent of the Australian population to the service in the first 18 months of operation.
It’s a big target and Digital Post won’t have the market to itself. Australia Post has also announced it will launch a digital post service, and has run a legal challenge against Digital Post Australia. While it lost its initial case, Australia Post has an appeal pending regarding alleged trademark infringement.
To reach its ambitious user targets Mr Dean said that Digital Post Australia would rely on a combination of its own direct marketing campaign, and the campaigns run by big business which would rather send communications to customers online rather than through physical mail services.
He said that the business model for the organisation had it achieving break even on its original investment within two years.
How will it work? Read on.