Woolworths supply chain exec to take over at Australia Post

Paul Graham has been named as the new chief executive officer at Australia Post, following the controversial departure of Christine Holgate late last year over the Cartier watch scandal.

The announcement of Graham’s appointment has come a week after Holgate opened up – for the first time – about her departure from Australia Post in a submission to a Senate inquiry into her exit from the postal service.

In her submission, which will be reviewed today (Tuesday) by the Senate inquiry committee, Holgate said she was “unlawfully stood down for no justified reason” by Australia Post chair Lucio Di Bartolomeo.

Graham will begin running the postal service in September after finishing up as the chief supply chain officer at Woolworths. He also brings 40 years experience in e-commerce to the role, as well as global experience in digital marketing and retail.

The pricing and distribution schedule of Australia Post has long been a bug-bear for Australian printers with many industry leaders putting the postal service at the top of their list of operational challenges.

During 2020 letter deliveries reduced to every second day as the service went in to overdrive to fulfil its parcel delivery workload. The Real Media Collective did secure some wins for printers during the pandemic with temporary relief provided for Print Post and Charity Mail sectors.

Australia Post chairman, Lucio Di Bartolomeo, said a global search for a replacement for Holgate had been conducted.

“On behalf of the board I am so pleased to announce Paul as the next CEO of Australia Post – an outstanding candidate with strong logistics, digital and retail experience both here and overseas, including as a senior executive at Deutsche Post DHL,” Di Bartolomeo said.

“Paul has a demonstrated track-record of delivering results in large, complex organisations and is a proven leader managing large teams.

Graham brings 40 years of experience to the role during his career which has included working in supply chain in Australia, Europe and Asia.

Ready to capitalise on e-commerce

Graham said he is proud to be appointed to lead Australia Post and is looking forward to getting started in the role later this year.

“Australia Post has proven itself to be one of the most resilient and successful postal businesses anywhere in the world,” Graham said.

“I feel fortunate to be joining at a time when we can truly capitalise on the extraordinary growth in eCommerce experienced in the past year and continue developing our retail and digital offerings while keeping letter deliveries strong.

“I am most looking forward to meeting the team across the country – the posties, Post Office workers, mail processors and delivery drivers that kept our country operating during COVID19.

“I am also looking forward to getting out into regional Australia where Australia Post has an enormous presence, as well as meeting with the thousands of Post Office licensee partners who play a critical role every day serving the country.”

Graham’s pay will be set at $1,456,560 fixed annual total remuneration with the potential to earn incentive payments of up to $1,456,560, in accordance with the parameters set by the Commonwealth Remuneration Tribunal.

Rodney Boys will continue to lead the business through the CEO transition period until Graham commences in September.

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