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DHL Expands E-Commerce Capabilities

DHL Group announced a strategic partnership with PrestaShop, a rising global player in e-commerce software in the European and Latin American markets.

At the same time, DHL Express has opened its new international hub at Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport. DHL invested 170 million euros ($196 million) into the new location, which is 10 times larger than the previous site.

In the PrestaShop deal, DHL, as the growing web shop’s global partner in e-commerce fulfillment, is poised to bolster its worldwide presence by engaging PrestaShop’s 300,000 participating merchants via joint promotional events and a pre-installed DHL fulfillment app integrated into PrestaShop merchants’ back-offices.

“Our DHL fulfillment app will be a highly visible and cohesive aspect of the merchant’s PrestaShop experience,” Katja Busch, chief commercial officer at DHL, said. “Implementing quick and intuitive customer tools for e-commerce fulfillment like this one demonstrates once again DHL’s commitment to putting the customer experience at the center of the logistics industry’s digitalization journey and is also a key element of our Strategy 2025.”

Merchants will benefit from DHL’s extensive global logistics network and e-fulfillment know-how to realize customers’ orders. The partnership is set to expand further to include additional DHL service offerings.

“The DHL fulfillment module provides easy access for small-entrepreneurial and medium-sized businesses to the DHL Supply Chain fulfillment capabilities,” Hendrik Venter, CEO of DHL Supply Chain for Europe, Middle-East and Africa, said. “With our European Fulfilment Network, we can provide on-demand fulfillment across any of our 30 strategically placed warehouses, covering all key European markets. This gives customers access to a state-of-art distribution network ready to support their international growth, now with a standardized and fully tested IT integration with PrestaShop.”

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DHL Group announced a partnership with PrestaShop, a rising player in e-commerce software in the European and Latin American markets.
PrestaShop merchants are now equipped with built-in access to DHL via an app. Courtesy

Alexandre Eruimy, CEO of PrestaShop, said the agreement “will take PrestaShop’s merchant and consumer experience to the next level in the coming years.”

The deal sets up a comprehensive plan for enhanced marketing and events to promote the benefits the exclusive partnership generates for merchants and customers around the world. In addition, DHL will be sponsoring future events such as the PrestaShop Day in Paris in mid-October. With an eye on transparency and generating fresh prospects, DHL will also connect regularly with PrestaShop’s partner and agency network via webinars and whitepapers.

The investment at the new international hub at Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport is DHL Express’s largest investment in Europe in recent years and the biggest ever in France since its arrival in 1976. The facility will strengthen DHL’s foothold in France, having also invested 80 million euros in its French infrastructures over the last six years.

“The DHL Express hub at Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport will play a key role in our international network,” John Pearson, CEO of DHL Express, said. “This is the fourth largest hub in our European network in terms of size and parcel processing volume…With ultramodern infrastructures fitted at Paris-Charles de Gaulle and our presence in 220 countries around the world, we have all the tools needed to meet the new challenges of an increasingly connected world.”

Both in France and the rest of the world, the growth in parcel shipments linked to e-commerce has considerably accelerated due to Covid-19 and is continuing at a very sustained pace in 2021, DHL said. In 2020, e-commerce enabled DHL Express France to grow its volume by about 8 percent compared to 2019. With the recovery of trade for its long-standing B2B customers, activity at DHL Express is intensifying in 2021.

The hub is located in a 91,000-square-meter space, the equivalent of 13 football fields. The construction work, which began in March 2020, took 20 months. Now up and running, the location is sized to absorb the growth of the next 10 years, with an option for further expansion.

“The hub is a nerve center for our network in France, but also in Europe,” Philippe Prétat, CEO of DHL Express France, said. “This new location comes at the right time, as e-commerce is booming. The trend was already under way, but has accelerated with the Covid-19 pandemic and looks set to continue. We are here to support this unprecedented growth.”

The DHL Express hub at Paris-Charles de Gaulle will also meet strict environmental criteria, including LED lighting with motion detectors, a sorting system with high-efficiency motors and energy-efficient air conditioning. The site aligns with the zero-emission target for 2050 set by DHL Group.

DHL Express France, which also has an intermediate objective of carrying out 70 percent of its pick-ups and deliveries using green transport by 2025, is multiplying initiatives in this direction. The company has more than 100 clean vehicles and delivers more than 50 city centers with zero-emission solutions.