Having started out state-run (under the name “PTT”), in 1991 we became a Public Industrial and Commercial Establishment. We then developed into a public-owned limited company in 2010. The French government is our majority shareholder, with 74% of shares. The other 26% are held by the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations.
Thanks to our original model, we can provide the four public service missions for which the French government made us responsible in the law of 2 July 1990 and which are the cornerstones of our identity :
The four public service missions
But what exactly is a "public service mission" ?
It’s an activity carried out by or on behalf of a public authority (in this case the French government). The aim is to meet a need in the public interest. In La Poste’s case, this means working to serve the French people six days a week. It means ensuring post and parcels are collected and delivered throughout the country. It’s about helping the quality press remain sustainable and facilitating the spread of ideas. It means ensuring everyone has access to a bank.
A unique postal model was born out of this close relationship with the French government. This model allows us to serve the French people six days a week, to ensure post and parcels are collected and delivered throughout the country, to help the quality press remain sustainable and facilitate the spread of ideas, and to ensure everyone has access to a bank.
These missions are detailed in a text linking La Poste and the French government: the service contract.
Because La Poste keeps pace with society, this contract is updated every five years and signed by representatives of the two parties.
The goal? To offer local services in keeping with the main principles of public service.
What are the main principles of public service ?
every person should be treated in the same way.
public services should operate without interruption.
public services must adapt to society’s developing needs.
Yes, La Poste is changing. It is developing, giving employees new responsibilities and innovating. However, one goal lies at the heart of all this change: to make French people’s lives easier.
Major changes in the status of Le Groupe La Poste
Creation of the post relays by Louis XI to carry the royal messages
Creation of the royal messenger offices, authorized to transport private mail
The private and royal postal networks have their rights reduced to the benefit of a centralized and concentrated organization: the Post General Farm
Operation of post offices directly by the State
Birth of the PTT (Post, Telegraph and Telephone)
The PTT are divided into two distinct public companies: France Telecom and La Poste, which becomes an autonomous public company
Opening to the competition: La Poste becomes a public limited company with 100% public capital