DHL opens two new facilities, invests US$38.14mn in South Africa

DHLLogistics and transportation major DHL has launched two new facilities in Plumbago, located close to OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg, South Africa

An excellent location for logistics services, the facilities offer the twin benefit of both freeway access and high visibility, the company said.

DHL also announced investments totalling US$38.14mn by both its Supply Chain and Global Forwarding divisions in the country.

The investments signal the group’s long-term growth plans for the region as it brings state-of-the-art infrastructure, IT systems and world-class services to support businesses operating in Africa, it added.

Roger Crook, CEO of DHL Global Forwarding and Freight, said, “Part of our global three pillar Strategy 2020 is to focus on further expansion of logistics services in the world’s emerging markets. Today, emerging market revenues contribute just over 20 per cent of the group’s revenues. By 2020, the group expects this figure to climb to 30 per cent.”

DHL Global Forwarding, provider of air, sea and road freight services, new facility costed US$20mn at the Plumbago Business Park and covers 12,000 sq m of warehouse space and 5,500 sq m of office space. The layout of the new facility improves cargo handling with an enhanced flow of goods in and out of the facility. The new facility also increases the company’s ability to offer customers a full range of value-added services (VAS) such as bonded storage and re-packing, and further grow its air and ocean freight export handling capabilities.

Twine Mtya, CEO of DHL Global Forwarding, Southern Africa, said, “Our new investments are necessary to support our growth and expansion plans in South Africa. In addition to our established air and ocean freight services, we have seen particular growth in our robust intermodal road network, spanning 12 African countries — road freight volumes have more than doubled in the past year, spurred by increasing demand and economic growth on the continent.”

DHL Global Forwarding is also expecting to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions in excess of 700,000 kg per annum from consolidating its Johannesburg operations into one facility.

The Supply Chain’s 25,000 sq m multi-user warehouse facility will be used to consolidate its technology client portfolio, as well as some key fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) clients. The facility has been purpose-built for the technology and consumer industries including speciality designs such as high density storage up to 16 metres in height for FMCG companies; optimised operational flows; a super flat floor necessary for such high-level storage and retrieval; and the latest technology on reach trucks.

Craig Roberts, CEO of DHL Supply Chain, Middle East and Africa, noted, “We are implementing international best practices at Plumbago, and this will become the model for other facilities across the country. Our long-term strategy is to develop warehouses in prime locations — with our well-established networks, we provide daily deliveries to almost all retailers across South Africa with 99.8 per cent on-time efficiency.”

The facility will offer market leading warehousing management systems, and includes eco-friendly features including energy efficient lighting system, and rain water harvesting for vehicle washing.

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