Makro awards £24m contract to distribution firm, Advanced Supply Chain

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Makro UK logistics manager Steve Mawby and Advanced's Mike Danby

Makro UK logistics manager Steve Mawby and Advanced's Mike Danby

Makro, the UK arm of worldwide wholesaler Metro, has awarded a £24m contract to UK-based transport, logistics and distribution company, Advanced Supply Chain.

According to Advanced Supply Chain, the three-year contract will result in 10%–15% growth per annum for its business plus the creation of a further 50-60 permanent jobs over the contract period.

Advanced has worked in partnership with Makro for eight years, initially pre-retailing and distributing fashion ranges, then footwear and part-pallet products and finally, all full-pallet ambient product.

Advanced said it will now be collecting in excess of 1,000 pallets per day from a supply base of some 350 suppliers, and delivering them to the Advanced’s Bradford-based distribution hub for allocation and onward delivery to the nationwide Makro stores.

Product will either be pallet picked, case picked onto consolidated pallets, or single item picked for online orders; allocated to store, and delivered either that night or at the latest, the following day.

Dave Jones, head of supply chain at Makro, said: “I am delighted to have secured the services of Advanced Supply Chain for the full distribution profile because, as an innovative and proactive partner, they have continually sought and identified areas of service and cost improvement. Following commencement of operations at the Advanced Makro DC in Bradford, we have seen improved stock availability, reduced stock holding and a consequent improvement in sales.”

Mike Danby, Advanced chief executive officer, attributed a major part of the success of the Makro operation to investment in bespoke IT systems, which have driven the consolidation, control, and audit trail of all the delivery streams.

Danby said: “In these days of rising fuel costs and reduced sales margins, it is essential people are not paying to transport containers and trailers full of fresh air. There are cost savings out there if full reviews of supply chains are initiated with a view to consolidating product wherever possible, and exploring opportunities to reduce the number of times a product is handled.”

Advanced said its philosophy of constant improvement included a new fleet of liveried double deck trailers, which have been designed to accommodate delivery of full pallets, part pallets and hanging garments; to maximise utilisation of the trailer cube, and to facilitate both rear and either side unloading.

The impact on loading and goods receiving time, together with the significant reduction in trailer movements, has facilitated improved turnaround time, dramatically reduced cost, and contributed to a reduction in CO2 emissions, it said.