Superdry has revealed that from autumn its ecommerce customers will be served from all three of its distribution centres. The three DCs are based in the UK, Europe and the US. The company claims that it means it will be able to offer market-leading delivery options in all of its key markets.
The 2018 financial year saw Superdry extend its multichannel capability to its European distribution centre, as well as implementing a new order management system for ecommerce. Superdry said that together, these developments allowed it to introduce its ecommerce delivery proposition to key European markets ahead of peak season.
It said both the UK and EU distribution centres are now serving all channels, reducing the speed to market. By Autumn 2018 its US distribution centre in Pennsylvania will also fulfil ecommerce sales, reducing delivery times and enabling the company to sell through new third-party channels.
Speaking as it announced year end results, Superdry said it is also working towards harmonisation of the global range, increasing the level of product overlap between its retail and wholesale ranges. In the financial year 2018, the company said it had increased this overlap by more than 20%. The harmonisation will also help the company to create a single consolidated inventory pool across its retail and wholesale channels, allowing it to maximise availability. It expects to have done this by the end of 2018.
The company is also reducing inventory held in store stock rooms and implementing more effective replenishment processes. It says doing so will minimise the movement of stock from production to sale without damaging availability while enhancing margins and reducing labour and logistics costs. Inventory cover has been reduced by 9 weeks to date.
Asda has revealed it is entering into consultation with staff at its Enfield Home Shopping Centre distribution facility in North London as it plans to close the site.
The retailer has opened two new fully automated shopping centres around London in the past 18 months – including one in Heston in July last year and one in London in May.
The Enfield site opened in 2010, employs 261 colleagues and delivers home shopping to 4,500 customers a week.
Asda claims the new sites have created over 700 new jobs whilst also providing increased capacity, improved accuracy and faster fulfilment to meet customer demand.
Simon Gregg, Vice President of Grocery Home Shopping at Asda, said that the Enfield site simply wasn’t viable any longer. “Despite great efforts by our colleagues at Enfield, restrictions on the site mean we are not able to make the necessary further improvements to meet the speed of fulfilment and product ranges that our customers now expect. Therefore, we’ve entered a consultation process with colleagues on proposals to close the facility,” he said.
The company is considering expanding capacity in its Heston centre and discussing options for colleagues to take on roles in other neighbouring stores. “Whilst conversations about change are never easy, we would always work to find new opportunities for impacted colleagues, with redundancy as a last resort,” said Gregg.
Marks & Spencer has expanded its click and collect returns offer to allow such returns to take place at Simply Food stores.
Customers could previously only collect their online orders in Simply Food stores but had to use larger M&S stores to return goods. The new service, which uses Doddle’s ‘Powered by Doddle’ technology on Marks & Spencer’s existing in-store devices, was initially trialled in seven locations from June 2017. It will now be available across 280 Simply Food locations, and in more by the end of the year.
Since implementing the new Doddle service, M&S claimed that 90% of customers claimed to be “extremely satisfied” with the in-store experience and 85% of customers claimed that the ability to return online purchases at Simply Food locations would encourage them to order more frequently.
“We’ve responded to increasing demand from our customers for more choice and convenience when it comes to collecting and returning their online orders,” said Richard Pugh, Head of M&S.com Logistics and Returns. “Providing customers with a consistent customer experience, regardless of which Marks & Spencer store they’re in, is key to making every moment special.”
“Marks & Spencer was looking to find a way to efficiently handle returns in its Simply Food network,” said Gary O’Connor, Doddle Chief Technology Officer. “With Powered by Doddle we were able to provide a simple, intuitive in-store workflow that was easy for staff to adopt while minimising the impact on retail operations.”
eBay has partnered with PayPoint to allow eBay sellers and buyers to use the Collect+ network for deliveries. eBay is the first multi-carrier partner for Collect+ signed by PayPoint.
eBay customers will initially have access to 2,500 selected stores within the Collect+ network from the beginning of October, in time for the start of peak season before expanding across the rest of the 7,000 strong network.
Commenting Dominic Taylor, CEO of PayPoint, said: “This deal is perfectly in-line with our parcel strategy as we move Collect+ to become the industry solution for a multi-carrier approach. We know that half of people collecting a parcel are visiting their local stores for the first time. The eBay deal therefore represents a significant boost in footfall and possible sales for our Collect+ retailers.”
eBay UK Vice President, Rob Hattrell, said: “24 million customers shop with us every month. We want to make it as convenient as possible for them to get the item they’re looking for. Our partnership with Collect+ is a great boost to our delivery options, giving customers thousands more locations to choose from when they are shopping.”
A new Parcels retailer app will be launched at the same time to improve in-store operations via parcels scanning in and out away from the counter, accepting driver deliveries via mobile and creates extra capacity to serve customers during busy times. The app will be available on iOS and Android.
Warehouse automation supplier Swisslog has supplied a second AutoStore system for online supermarket Ocado. The system will be implemented at the retailer’s new general merchandise distribution centre in south-east London. Ocado already has a Swisslog AutoStore in operation at a separate general merchandise DC in Welwyn Garden City.
Consisting of 72,108 bins, 94 robots, 14 carousel ports and seven conveyor ports, the new solution is expected to increase efficiency and maximise space utilisation at Ocado’s new site. Shane Faulkner, Swisslog UK’s Head of Sales, explains that the AutoStore selected by Ocado is one of Swisslog’s flagship solutions.
“It is becoming increasingly popular for businesses to invest in systems that allow them to boost productivity while making the best possible use of their space. With AutoStore, robots collect the required bins and present them at integrated picking stations – meaning maximum efficiency and better space utilisation,” he said.
Richard Locke, Head of General Merchandise at Ocado, said: “With our first General Merchandise Distribution Centre now operating at capacity, the opening of our second facility creates exciting new opportunities to grow and build on the success we have had in GM in recent years. Using AutoStore with Swisslog again means that we have alignment between our first and second GMDCs, as we are using tried and trusted technology. The added capacity which GMDC2 will also support our first Fulfilled By Ocado partnership with Dobbies, which will be launching this year”.
Amazon is expanding its Dash Replenishment programme in the UK, allowing automatic reordering of consumables from more companies.
The company said that Bosch, Kyocera and Siemens have now incorporated Dash Replenishment into their connected devices whilst brands such as Beko, Candy, Hoover and Sharp are to integrate Dash Replenishment into new product categories such as TV remotes and coffee machines.
Dash Replenishment enables connected devices to measure supply consumption through a variety of sensors and then automatically reorder supplies needed – whether that’s detergent for a washing machine or ink for a printer.
“With Dash Replenishment we’re working to make the process of shopping for everyday consumables completely disappear, because we’ve all felt the frustration of running out of something we frequently use,” said Eric Saarnio, Head of Amazon Devices EU. “Dash Replenishment allows manufacturers to add even more convenience to connected products, enabling a device to automatically reorder so a customer never has to worry about running out of what they need.”
Under the programme Dash Replenishment-enabled dishwashers from Bosch and Siemens will automatically reorder dishwasher detergent whilst Kyocera printers will reorder ink and toner. Toshiba TV remote controls will be the first brand in the UK to offer automatic re-ordering of batteries whilst Candy, Haier, Hoover and Sharp are developing washing machines to help automatically re-order laundry detergent and fabric softener. illy is developing espresso and coffee machines to easily reorder capsules.