The Post Office has reported an increased profit of £107m despite a decline in its revenue.
Operating profit before exceptional items in the last financial year was £107m, while losses for the network of Crown Post Offices were cut from £37m to £26m.
The period covers a bout of industrial action by the Communication Workers Union in protest at the closure of Crown offices – the larger branches usually found on high streets.
The Post Office, which remains in the public sector compared to the privatised Royal Mail, said revenue fell by £55m to £1.18bn.
Paula Vennells, Post Office Chief Executive, said: “Like all organisations, we have had to adapt to prevailing economic conditions and last year especially we faced a challenging industrial relations climate.
“So it is pleasing to announce that our operating profit before exceptional items has increased as a result of greater cost management that more than offset the decline in revenue and the reduction in the subsidy.
“At the same time, we have managed to prioritise investment in key transformation programmes as we work towards future financial sustainability.
“In mails, telecoms and government services, we have put in place the mechanisms which will allow us to build and open up new revenue streams in the future.
“The decline in mails revenue was, of course, disappointing, but we remain confident that we have the right commercial strategy in place, and importantly the right retail mind-set, to ensure we respond to changing customer requirements.
“The Post Office is an organisation like no other.
“Our branches contribute enormously to the life and soul of their communities.
“Customer satisfaction is running at over 95% in our modernised outlets, and opening hours, which have increased by more than 50,000 a week, are proving popular with millions of customers visiting our branches outside traditional opening hours.
“These new modern branches, and our plans to drive the transformation to every corner of the business, underline to our customers the commitment of the Post Office to remain at the heart of our communities, connecting people and providing access to key services into the future.
“None of this is to cloud the reality of what was a challenging year.
“It is clear we must operate at greater pace than ever before – and focus more on our customers and commercial realities.”