Zumbox forms JV to set up Australian digital mail platform
US digital mail company Zumbox has joined two Australian companies to launch a new joint venture to establish a digital postal system in Australia. The company said today that its alliance with Computershare Ltd and Salmat will mean a “unique” private utility being set up to provide secure electronic mail delivery and archiving for every household in Australia.
The new venture is called Digital Post Australia, and the plan is for the service to start up by the end of the year.
California-based Zumbox has been offering a digital mailbox to every home in the United States since 2010, with each account linked to a physical address, allowing consumers to switch their bills and statements to the digital channel if their billing providers are signed up to use the service.
Zumbox also offers a “white box” solution, Digital Postal Mail powered by Zumbox, which allows other organisations and postal services to provide their own digital mail service using Zumbox technology. New Zealand Post is already signed up to make use of the system.
The new system in Australia is already in the process of being deployed, Zumbox said earlier today.
The project will include versions available on iPhone, iPad and Android devices as well as computer browsers, with claims that mailers could save between 50% and 70% on postage using the channel.
David Hynes, the chairman of Digital Post Australia, said the companies involved in the partnership were the “best companies globally” to take digital postal mail into Australian households.
“In addition to the many benefits DPA provides households and families, such as anytime access and convenient online storage of documents, the positive impact on the environment with fewer trees destroyed or paper, fewer mail trucks on the road and less waste in landfills,” said Hynes.
Both of Zumbox’ new partners are firms listed on the Australian stock exchange. Melbourne-based Computershare is a major financial market services and technology provider, while Salmat is an international marketing and communications company.
Stuart Crosby, CEO of Computershare, which revealed it will have a 40% stake in the venture, said: “We are excited to be providing a new channel for clients to communicate to customers. With the click of a button, people can receive their mail online no matter where they are, bypassing the physical post box. Once online, customers can easily access other online tools, leveraging the technologies Computershare and our clients have invested in.”
Grant Harrod, CEO of Salmat, said: “We see digital postal mail as a great extension of our multi-channel communication strategy and in particular our focus on digital communications.”
John Payne, the Zumbox chief executive and now a board member for Digital Post Australia, said the fact the project was being built on his company’s platform provided “validation” for the technology.
“This is Zumbox’ second engagement outside of the US and we are exited to be advancing international markets’ push toward digital postal mail,” he said.
“We are seeing high demand for digital alternatives to the current postal system, both here in the US and abroad, and Digital Post Australia is a great example of the value these systems bring the entire mailing ecosystem.”
One of Zumbox’ rivals, Pitney Bowes’ Volly platform, signed a partnership with software giant Adobe last month in part to develop a “white box” version of its digital mail platform, so that it can be bought and branded by external operators in a similar way.