The signal importance of policy and regulation in the transport field is beyond dispute. Equally, it is said of transport issues that they are all too often at the mercy of policy innovations from cognate sectors (Hallsworth et al., 1998). In this paper we suggest that this is precisely the case in the courier services sector. In the past two decades the fast courier sector has been the fastest-growing sector of physical transportation—and it is perhaps most simply defined by reference to such key players as UPS, DHL and FedEx. The rise in the numbers of delivery-dedicated fleets of aircraft, vans and trucks has been inexorable—impacting on all facets of the “transport problem”. However, rather than concentrate on the wider effects of this important transport sector we choose in this paper to focus on the roots of the industry and the signal importance of policy in the form of market regulation and competition.