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DHL Express opens North Asia Hub

By control on July 11, 2012

The $175 million DHL Express North Asia Hub at Shanghai Pudong International Airport is officially open for business, the German postal and logistics firm announced in a press release. In addition to creating the biggest express hub in Asia, DHL said the logistics center will provide customers in major northern Asian cities and beyond with guaranteed, time-definite deliveries.

The DHL Express North Asia Hub spans 105,000 square yards and can process up to 20,000 documents and 20,000 packages an hour, according to the press release. It will also complement the company’s already-established hubs in Hong Kong, Bangkok and Singapore — which, together, link to more than 70 regional gateways.

Deutsche Post DHL CEO Frank Appel called the completion of the facility “a logistics milestone in DHL’s Asia-Pacific network” and said it cements the company’s position as an industry leader. After all, Appel said, “With Asia’s leading economies fast integrating and free-trade agreements reducing barriers to international commerce, logistics companies need capabilities that are ahead of the curve and offer simplicity, speed and service.”

Li Derun, president of Shanghai Airport Authority, said the hub will also enhance freight operations at Pudong International Airport, improving capacity and speed. In a statement, Derun said the launch of the DHL Express North Asia Hub “marks a step forward for Shanghai’s air cargo hub and also opens a new chapter of collaboration between the Shanghai Airport Authority and DHL.”

In anticipation of increased freight volumes out of Shanghai, DHL announced that it will add eight dedicated aircraft to service routes between Shanghai and North Asia, Europe and the U.S. over the next two years, a $132 million investment. The announcement came one day after Appel revealed in a press conference that the company is targeting Asia for growth.

Although the Asia-Pacific already holds a big chunk of DHL’s global business — nearly 20 percent — company executives hope to increase that number even more in the near future. By 2017, profits generated in the Asia-Pacific should account for nearly one-third of the company’s total revenues, Appel asserted during the press conference.

“Over the past three decades, we have established a second-to-none platform in the Asian markets, which sets the foundation for the continued success of our DHL divisions,” Appel told members of the public. “We are well positioned for prolonged profitable growth across the region.”

Preparing for such growth led DHL to invest more than $2.5 billion in Asia in recent years. In addition to the DHL Express North Asia Hub, the company also has high hopes for DHL Supply Chain’s upcoming MegaHub, a state-of-the art center that will be located in Tsing Yi Island, Hong Kong. China remains DHL’s top focus, however, since the nation accounts for more than half of its total revenue earned in Asia.

Appel told the press that the company will continue to grow its operations in China to address current and future growth. “We are committed to retaining our market-leading position here by helping international players to be successful in China as well as supporting Chinese fast-growing enterprises on their international growth path,” he said in a statement.

“As a pioneer in the Chinese express and logistics market, we will be capitalizing on the massive opportunities this country of superlatives is offering,” Appel continued.

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