Logistics on the Ball
DHL helps Postbank set a world's record in Borussia-Park - getting 142,000 soccer balls into and out of the stadiumBonn/Mönchengladbach, 06/06/2005, 11:30 AM CEST
142,000 soccer balls are a true challenge for a logistics company. Especially when each and every one of them must be taken out of its packaging, brought into a stadium and then repackaged and transported away on approximately 45 trucks. And all that in 24 hours' time. This was precisely the challenge that DHL took on for the world record set today by its affiliated company, Postbank, at Borussia-Park in Mönchengladbach. Approximately 142,000 yellow balls - rolled into and out of the stadium gates by DHL - were placed on the field by 320 Postbank employees.
The planning and organization of logistic supply chains and the transport of goods are part of DHL's core business. An event such as this is unique in the company's history, however, and an example of how members of the Group work hand-in-hand together. DHL Express agreed immediately when Postbank, a national sponsor of the FIFA World Cup 2006 TM, sought more than just transport aid. Over 9,000 boxes with balls were delivered to the stadium on the weekend by adidas in 25 x 40 foot overseas containers. "It quickly became clear that we couldn't bring the balls into the stadium in their boxes," said Marco Schlüter, Key Account Manager at DHL Express. The empty boxes alone would have formed a twelve-meter high wall around the playing field. So the logistics company decided to unpack all of the balls, place them in a 30 x 30 x 2 meter wire-mesh trolley and then roll them into the stadium on a ramp on Monday morning.
When it came time to repackage the balls, the boxes were brought onto the playing field on roller tracks built specifically for the purpose, filled with balls and then pushed back out again. A detailed plan requiring 100 DHL employees alone was drawn up for the packaging and loading of the balls. After being placed into the waiting trailers, the balls were then taken to a Deutsche Post central warehouse in Nohra (near Weimar) by approximately 45 trucks. From there they will be sent to their recipients throughout Germany in the coming weeks, individually or in small groups - via DHL of course.