The New Poland Connection

After just one year, the new cooperation connecting East and West more closely is already established. The Hermes Einrichtungs Service (HES) and Zadbano were able to clarify the essence of the partnership at the Poznań furniture fair a few weeks ago during a kickoff event – namely, a sophisticated logistics concept for furniture from Poland that is intended to offer numerous advantages to German, Austrian, and French retailers and serve as the basis for building a network for B2C delivery across much of Europe.

“Europe continues to grow economically closer together, and Poland is by far the second-largest supplier of furnishings for brick-and-mortar retail and e-commerce. Therefore, it is a logical step to take care of a transparent and scalable process solution. With a strong local partner who is excellently networked in the Polish market, this lever can be activated most quickly,” says Heiko Hufenbach, Business Development Manager at HES.

The joint cooperation solution offers manufacturers, importers, and retailers many advantages: The powerful infrastructure of HES with around 60 depot locations and three distribution centers ensures efficient processes, fully utilized transports, and thus decreasing handling costs. At the same time, significantly shortened delivery times are an important success factor in the furniture trade: The lead time between production and delivery to the end customer can be reduced to ten working days in the best-case scenario!

Through customer-oriented appointment scheduling and shipment tracking, as well as a comprehensive range of high-quality assembly and installation services, a comprehensive service experience is offered to the end customers.

Both companies specialize in the careful handling of furniture and similar sensitive goods. Unlike in the general cargo sector, all steps of goods handling and transport are tailored to the specifics of the furniture sector, ensuring minimal damage rates and return costs.
The logistics process that both partners realize together begins with the “First Mile,” when Zadbano picks up and consolidates the goods from Polish producers. The “Middle Mile,” the transport from Poland to Germany, is also in the hands of Zadbano until the goods arrive at the Hermes HUB in Löhne. From this point, HES takes over, responsible for the turnover of goods and transport within Germany, to Austria, and to France. Then follows the B2C delivery on the “Last Mile” by two-man teams of HES and international partners such as Agediss in France and Gebrüder Weiss in Austria. In the case of returns, the process runs with the same division of labor: HES teams pick up the goods in the customer’s apartment and ensure the return transport to the HES returns warehouse in Löhne. From there, Zadbano takes over.

The allocation of contractual partners is also clearly regulated between the two logistics companies: If it concerns Polish companies, the contract is concluded with Zadbano. HES, in turn, is the contracting party when the retailer or importer is from Germany or Western Europe.
Collaboration is particularly interesting for trade partners with shipping volumes from 1,500 shipments per year, as this is when the benefits of bundled and fully utilized truck transports come into play.

In addition, the trade partner should have a powerful IT infrastructure to ensure a smooth workflow of the collaboration. Both companies therefore support a variety of standard formats for IT integration.

For several clients, the final setup of the systems is currently underway, so that the first goods transports can start shortly.

HES Sales Manager Jens-Uwe Sander is already looking ahead: “We are starting the pilot phase with great enthusiasm, where the focus is on quickly optimizing, deepening, and expanding the collaboration. New products and services can be developed together, and existing offers can be expanded. A possible extension of the cooperation to further European markets is also on the agenda. Because of course, it is also about expanding and securing our market position. We want to build and expand the largest two-man handling network in Europe.”

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