LONDON: Following last week's strike vote by Communication Workers Union members, Britain's direct mail industry is readying itself for a summer of disruption. Although a national stoppage is unlikely, many mailers expect a series of short-term strikes.

Union members roundly rejected the Royal Mail's offer of a 2.5% pay rise with a possible bonus of £800 and a 50% share in above-budget cost savings achieved locally.

The CWU also fears another round of substantial job cuts as the RM tightens its belt to ward off increasing competition from private contractors.

Despite the overwhelming 75% vote in favour of a strike, the union still hopes to negotiate a deal.

But RM chairman, the former supermarket boss Alan Leighton, remains intransigent: "If we don't modernise we'll fail . . . so our position remains."

The UK Direct Marketing Association, many of whose members would be hard hit by industrial action, has yet to comment on the situation.

Data sourced from BrandRepublic (UK); additional content by WARC staff