Bloomberg News

Deutsche Post Letter-Pricing Policy Being Reviewed by Regulator

September 29, 2011

Sept. 30 (Bloomberg) -- Deutsche Post AG, the world’s biggest carrier of air and sea freight by volume, said it’s facing questions from a regulator after competitors alleged the company wrongfully charges some clients too little.

“We don’t see this as a formal investigation,” said Dirk Klasen, a spokesman for Bonn, Germany-based Deutsche Post.

The Federal Network Agency is responding to complaints from unnamed competitors about the pricing policy of Deutsche Post’s Infopost service, which lets companies send letters to multiple recipients at a reduced price as long as the contents are identical, according to a preview of a story being published today by news magazine WirtschaftsWoche.

“The Federal Network Agency received a complaint from competitors, and asked for our standpoint,” Klasen said. “We offered it, and the agency then usually relays it to the competitors. It may be that this explanation didn’t satisfy the competitors, and that’s why they went to WirtschaftsWoche.”

Standard letters usually cost 0.55 euros (75 cents), while those sent via Infobrief cost 0.35 euros. Competitors alleged that bills for automobile-breakdown service ADAC, health- insurance cards from Techniker-Krankenkasse and debit cards from Deutsche Postbank AG have been charged at the reduced delivery rate, and were wrongfully classified as advertising.

“If we receive a complaint we look into the matter,” Rainer Warnecke, a Federal Network Agency spokesman, said by telephone.

--With assistance from Karin Matussek in Berlin. Editors: Romaine Bostick, Niamh Ring

To contact the reporter on this story: Alex Webb in Frankfurt at awebb25@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chad Thomas at cthomas16@bloomberg.net


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