Chinese bargain hunters have the date marked in red in their diaries: On Singles‘ Day, 11.11.2015, prices are cut drastically and discounts of between 50 and 70 percent encourage millions to click and close an online deal. Traders expect sales to run into billions. The Chinese version of Valentine’s Day has meanwhile blossomed into the world’s largest online shopping day – and a day which confronts DB Schenker Logistics with immense challenges.
The orders are placed via Tmall, an internet platform that belongs to China’s internet giant Alibaba. Last year, Alibaba reported total orders worth an equivalent of EUR 7.4 billion . Based on the findings of internet surveys, the pundits forecast new record figures in 2015.
The Deutsche Bahn subsidiary in Shanghai is the sole provider of logistics services for various international brand names from the worlds of fashion, luxury goods and jewelry. The largest customer is a US fashion house. “Instead of the usual staff of 200, a good 1,300 employees are on duty on Singles’ Day and over the following days, working round the clock to process the high number of purchases. This compares with a headcount of just 700 in November 2014”, says Torben Kock, Vice President Global Retail at DB Schenker Logistics.
DB Schenker Logistics has been active in China for decades and has a dense network of locations in all the key economic regions. In China, the network meanwhile covers 160 locations in 62 different cities and also includes 85 logistics centers with a total storage area of around 940,000 m². More than 5,000 DB Schenker employees in China work day in, day out to deliver comprehensive logistics solutions for customers the world over.
Born in Flensburg, Torben Kock (44) has been active for DB Schenker Logistics in Hong Kong for almost 6 years. He is in charge of Schenker customers from the retail segment around the glbe, and head of fashion logistics of the rail subsidiary.