The company spent €5 million expanding capacity in the hub in Athlone and €3 million upgrading IT infrastructure to speed package delivery to eager customers.
It opened a new 15,000 square foot distribution centre for Cavan and Monaghan in April, to facilitate 1 million deliveries around the two counties this year. DPD also opened a new depot in Kilkenny and expanded production at its central hub in Athlone.
The facilities increase DPD’s capacity to handle the “new normal” demand from online retailers, and future peak events such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas.
DPD chief executive Des Travers said the Covid-19 pandemic led to an unprecedented boom in demand for the company’s delivery service, and the new facilities form part of continued investment in infrastructure, to expand network capacity and maintain very high service standards.
“We made this investment in our infrastructure, opening new depots, to ensure we can continue to meet the high levels of demand for our services.”
He said the company was investing long-term as it believes consumers will continue to buy more online, and future demand will only increase as more and more online shops open up.
“We experienced one of the biggest booms in online retailing over the past 18 months, but we also experienced a shift in behaviour. Even with shops re-opening, a reliance on online shopping has been maintained by consumers, and this is going to be our new normal going forward,” he said.
He said the company has also created a number of new departments including customs, training, security, audit, transformation and telesales, due to the rapid growth, with DPD Ireland achieving 2025 revenue targets in one year as a result of the pandemic.
Parcel volumes jumped from 17 million in 2017 to 36 million in 2020 and are up to 44 million in 2021. Staff numbers at the company grew from 700 in 2017 to 2,200 in 2021 driven by the huge growth in online shopping as lockdown restrictions forced more consumers online.DP