Ireland’s largest independent parcel carrier Nightline has been celebrating its 20-year anniversary with a visit from Deputy Prime Minister Eamon Gilmore.
The Dublin-based company started trading in a “back bedroom” this month in 1992, growing to the point at which last year it was handling more than 11m parcels, around a quarter of the Irish market.
The last months in particular have seen a wave of expansion at Nightline, with two of the company’s seven facilities – in Limerick and Sligo – doubling in size, while a third in Cork was expanded by 50% and an entirely new facility was opened in Belfast.
The company is also expanding its Dublin headquarters site in a EUR 5.5m project, and has invested EUR 1m in its IT infrastructure and equipment to support surging volumes.
Commenting as he toured the Dublin site this month, Gilmore said: “Nightline is an excellent example of an innovative Irish company that is enjoying success despite the current downturn.
“Twenty years in business is a significant milestone and it is clear that the company has been built on a solid foundation of innovation, commitment and hard work,” added the Deputy Prime Minister.
John Tuohy, the Nightline CEO, said his company had come a “long way” in two decades.
Celebration (left-to-right): Local TD John Lyons, Nightline COO Dave Fields, Deputy Prime Minister Eamon Gilmore TD and John Tuohy, the Nightline CEO
“In the last 12 months alone, the expansion in the size and capability of our depots, the acquisition of more business from major retail clients and our investment in staff and IT underlines our desire not to stand still,” said Tuohy.
Nightline’s 20-year anniversary comes as the company is gearing up for its next big challenge, launching an island-wide network of automated parcel delivery terminals from next month.
The so-called “Parcel Motels” will be using parcel terminals made by Poland’s InPost, with 100 terminals planned for the first phase of the project, across the greater Dublin area.
The terminals allow consumers to pick up parcels any time of day or night, particularly those who cannot be at home to receive deliveries during a working day. Comprising a bank of lockers into which ecommerce buyers can elect to have their parcels delivered, recipients are sent alerts when their parcels arrive, giving them an individual code with which to open their parcel locker.
A second phase of the Parcel Motel project should see as many as 400 parcel locker units installed nationwide by 2014.
Tuohy said: “The launch next month of Parcel Motel, a novel new approach to handling consumer packages, should make even clearer how ambition and growth is very much a key element of this firm’s DNA.”