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Blokker connects “bricks and clicks” by combining online and offline DCs

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Dutch household goods chain Blokker is creating a “hypermodern” omnichannel supply chain by combining its online and offline distribution centres.

The distribution centre in Geldermalsen, which currently focuses on physical stores, will now be converted into an automated hub for all sales. Its Gouda hub, which currently fulfils online orders, will be closed.

As well as renovating the Geldermalsen depot, the company will combine its warehouse management systems into one omnichannel system.

The company had operated separate supply operations for online and offline in order to quickly scale its online offer. However, the new strategy aims to create a “more consistent and better customer-oriented offer”.

As well as combining the DCs, value points for the offline Douwe Egberts chain will now be able to be used online.

The company said 14 jobs would be lost as a result of the combination, which will be completed after the summer. Blokker aims to replace as many workers as possible within the company.

Blokker’s online and offline operations have already been managed from the same head office in Amsterdam since January. Its Midjrecht DC has already been closed.

Blokker is a member of the IREU Top500 index, tracking the top performing retailers in Europe. However, in recent years it has come under financial pressures, posting a loss in 2017.

Accordingly, in May 2017, the company refocused solely on the Blokker brand and announced plans to sell other store chains.

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