Parcel carrier Hermes UK has won a new contract to run home delivery services for retail giant John Lewis.
The three-year deal will see Leeds-based Hermes handling delivery and returns for items up to 15kg in weight, across the retailer’s online range.
Hermes will provide its fully-tracked 48-hour delivery service for orders of fashion items, toys, homewards, electrical products and gifts.
The company will collect from John Lewis fulfillment centres, using a combination of stand trailers and sweep vehicles for collections six days per week.
Items will then go to Hermes’ national distribution hub in Nuneaton, Warwickshire, for sorting prior to transport to the company’s regional depots and its network of 7,500 couriers delivering to households across the UK.
Hermes said it will handle returns through its myhermes.co.uk web portal, offering free returns for John Lewis customers, who will be able to arrange courier collection on specific days direct from their homes.
Online shopping through the johnlewis.com website is seeing growth well into the double digits at the moment. Including ‘click and collect’, where customers pick up items ordered online from local stores, the website accounted for about 24% of John Lewis’ GBP 1.6bn sales in the first half of this year, achieving a 40% increase on the same period last year.
John Lewis has also uses DX Group’s Nightfreight business for two-man home delivery, through its deliver2home service, but the company was one of the big retailers who have stopped using troubled parcel carrier Yodel over the past 12 months, ending their contract towards the end of 2011.
Justin Cox, general manager of UK carriers at John Lewis Partnership, said his company had carried out an extensive review within the carrier marketplace before awarding the new contract to Hermes, and that returns had been an important part of choosing the contractor.
“We determined the Hermes courier model offered the best fit in terms of service and value for this element of our delivery proposition,” Cox said.
“The myHermes solution will also form an important part of our returns service moving forward, enhancing this aspect of our online shopping experience to our customers.”
Hermes, which is part of the European Hermes Logistics Group, owned by German catalogue retailer Otto Group, said its service was designed to meet the “precise needs” of retail customers like John Lewis.
Carole Woodhead, the Hermes UK chief executive, said: “Our high-quality doorstep service is supported with industry-leading technology and product innovation to provide the consumer with a convenient and hassle-free delivery service that achieves high levels of satisfaction and ultimately creates brand value.”
Source: Post&Parcel/Hermes UK