Marks & Spencer (M&S) and DP World London Gateway have announced that M&S will build a major new distribution centre at the new deep-sea container port and logistics park, which opens later this year on the Thames in South Essex, just 25 miles from central London.
Locating M&S’ new distribution centre at Britain’s new global shipping gateway means the company will move millions of products directly from ships to the company’s hi-tech warehousing facility at the adjacent London Gateway Logistics Park. London Gateway’s south east location gives M&S closer access to key UK cities which means goods will not travel as far to reach consumers. This model will be both cost effective for M&S and remove millions of lorry miles from UK roads along with thousands of tonnes of CO2.
As part of its £200 million investment at DP World’s London Gateway, M&S will create approximately 700 jobs; there will also be hundreds of additional workers employed in the construction phase.
The announcement, which marks a major milestone in the development of the 1,500-acre site, was welcomed by Prime Minister David Cameron, who visited DP World London Gateway this morning and discussed global trade with an audience of 150 business leaders.
Marc Bolland, Chief Executive of Marks & Spencer, said: “London Gateway will become our third large distribution centre in the UK as we transform our logistics operations into a modern and agile supply chain, fit for the future of M&S. As we become an international, multichannel retailer, London Gateway will help us become more efficient by cutting costs and locating our supply chain closer to our stores and our international markets. It will also help us deliver against our Plan A objectives by removing road miles and emissions from our network.”
His Excellency Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman DP World, said: “I’m delighted to be able to welcome the Prime Minister and Marc Bolland to DP World London Gateway. We are proud to be able to contribute to the UK economy by providing a more efficient and more reliable global supply chain infrastructure, to the benefit of British business and British consumers. This is a great place and a great time to be talking about global trade.”
Mohammed Sharaf, Group CEO, DP World, said: “Marks & Spencer is a world renowned and trusted brand that is today setting the pace for other UK businesses, leading the way in taking advantage of the benefits of new infrastructure and an outstanding location. We are very pleased to welcome them as the first tenant at our London Gateway Logistics Park.”
Simon Moore, CEO, DP World London Gateway, said: “Marks & Spencer will have a world-class distribution centre connected to a world-class deep-sea port providing more reliability and efficiency for its business. By bringing ships carrying millions of products closer to the point of consumption we will help M&S to shorten its supply chain. We will also support Marks and Spencer’s exports from London Gateway. We look forward to working alongside them now and in the many years to follow.”