DHL's USD177m infrastructure investment extends its Middle East lead
- Five new facilities for Middle East and North Africa on stream by Q4 2014
- Investment reinforces DHL's pioneering and market leadership status in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and UAE
- New Dubai facility is DHL's biggest ground operation facility in region
DHL Express is set to extend its leadership across the Middle East and North Africa with the 2014 completion of a USD177 million two-year investment in new facilities in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and UAE. Focused on the largest markets in a growing region, DHL's investment creates three new facilities and gateways in Saudi Arabia, a new Country Office in Cairo, and launches its biggest ground operations facility in the region in Dubai.
Nour Suliman, CEO, Middle East and North Africa, DHL Express, said: "DHL has pioneered logistics in this region for 35 years, building market leadership through innovation, service excellence and commitment. The Middle East and North Africa and its trading links are growing in importance in the global logistics industry with strong growth projections for the next few years. Our plan is to be right at the center of that growth to serve our customers. As the world's leading logistics provider, it is important for us to support and help build international trade routes. Our investment of USD177 million in bigger and more efficient operational gateways in major markets such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE shows that we are committed to our pioneering role."
The new best-in-class facilities represent a major milestone for DHL's fast growing Middle East and North Africa network bringing innovative new services, increased staffing and air capacity. Together the investment allows DHL to offer customers in the region an unrivaled competitive advantage via best access to the global economy.
New gateways in Saudi Arabia
In Saudi Arabia, over USD95 million has been invested to create three new gateways - Damman, Riyadh and Jeddah - all linked to all major DHL Express distribution hubs around the world including DHL's regional hub in Bahrain. The new DHL Express Riyadh Head Office and Gateway facility at King Khalid International Airport will open in September.
The Riyadh Gateway, designed to meet global engineering quality standards, is a 4,000sqm operational facility built on a 12,000sqm site. It will employ over 150 workers and for the first time allows DHL to offer an in-house customs bonded facility in Saudi Arabia, which is expected to reduce average clearance times.
Opened in 2013, DHL's Dammam Gateway and Service Center at King Fahd International Airport which measures 10,000sqm has allowed the company to increase its operational capacities in the region and the company's logistics offerings to customers in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and across the GCC region. The Jeddah facility, which is scheduled for completion later this year, is a 5,850sqm gateway sitting on a 15,000 sqm land plot.
Expansion of trade
The new gateways will double DHL's logistics offering to customers in Saudi Arabia and support the expansion of trade by increasing connections between Saudi Arabia and the UAE, and major trading partners including China, Japan and the United States. In 2012, DHL Express processed 300,000 express shipments in Saudi Arabia through a network of 40 service points and five service centers.
Nour added, 'With its increasing levels of trade and a Gross Domestic Product that the International Monetary Fund projects will grow by 4.4% in 2014, Saudi Arabia is one of the region's biggest markets for DHL Express. Our capability in Saudi Arabia is a key revenue and service driver for the region - the new gateways and new flights into Riyadh, where capacity constraints previously capped the movements at nine per week will boost revenue growth for our customers region-wide."
New Country Office in Cairo
In Egypt, DHL has invested approximately USD55 million in a new Country Office in Cairo to serve as its country head office, gateway, service center, strategic parts center, facilitating Middle East-North Africa connections to Europe. Set to open in August 2014, the new 7,300sqm facility will be DHL's largest Gateway facility in North Africa and an important logistics milestone offering bonded warehousing services for storing and re-exporting goods for the first time in Egypt. Egypt is a major logistics hub in the region for DHL with over 1,500 active customers, five service centers, 28 service points and a 40% market share.
In the UAE, DHL is investing USD27 million in three facilities including Meydan, Dubai which is DHL's largest ground operations facility in the Middle East and North Africa. The new facility will increase speed of service, ensure earlier deliveries, late pick-ups and set new industry benchmarks in Dubai's express market. DHL's Meydan facility will occupy 17,265sqm, and will include a 7,272sqm indoor sorting and loading area and state-of- the-art materials handling technology. A new 4,333sqm office will serve as DHL's new head office.
The Dubai Hub is being revamped to use the area vacated by head office resulting in a doubling of the service center capacity. In addition, the gateway and service center in Abu Dhabi is being relocated to the new Logistics Park at Abu Dhabi Airport Business City to provide warehouse space of 2,880sqm.
Last year, DHL introduced two new flights to its Middle East network to Lebanon and Qatar and DHL has also unveiled plans to grow its presence in Morocco. A pioneer in the Middle East and North Africa logistics industry for more than 30 years, DHL currently operates over 260 service centers and service points across 15 countries in the region. It employs over 5,000 employees across the Middle East.