The Companhia de Moçambiqe was formed in 1888. It administered by concession the central part of Portuguese East Africa (Mozambique) from 1891 until 1941, when its 50 years (prolonged from 25 years in 1897) charter terminated. The company, though it had its headquarters at Beira, was controlled and financed mostly by the British. The company had exclusive rights to develop the economy of its territory, which, politically and legally continued to belong to Portugal. The concession gave the company special trading privileges and even the authority to collect taxes and duties but infrastructure was to be constructed, public services maintained and a fee paid to the Portuguese government. Most rights, including the direct administration of the territories and the issuing of stamps, reverted to Portugal in 1942.

The organisation of the postal service was part of the rights and obligations of the Mozambique Company, and between 1892 and 1941 it issued postage stamps (some 280 different). Most of the stamps from 1918 on were recess printed in London and are colourful and exotic. The sale of stamps (frequently cancelled to order) certainly was a welcome income for the company.


1: Michel number 1 (issued in 1892)