Multi-billion pound value retailer B&M is to increase its imports in to the Port of Liverpool by 30% after growing increasingly frustrated with delays at Southern Ports.
Its means Liverpool-based B&M, which operates more than 600 UK stores and enjoys annual sales of more than £3bn, will now ship 80% of its stock from its global suppliers via the River Mersey.
It is the second major coup for port owner Peel Ports this month after Maersk Line and MSC decided to permanently switch its Transatlantic TA4 route linking the UK with several US ports from Felixstowe to Liverpool.
Over the coming months, B&M, which operates from its headquarters in Speke, expects to shift all cargo to Liverpool in a permanent move, citing quicker lead-times and a reduction in road miles afforded by the port’s central location as among the key reasons why.
Jerome Wildsmith, B&M’s head of supply chain said: “Over the past few years, we have strengthened our relationship with the Port of Liverpool, importing increasingly larger volumes of cargo and taking advantage of strong partnerships with our shipping operator Maersk and our inland logistics supplier, JWT Commercial.
“We recently increased our imports into Liverpool from 50% to 80% of our total cargo, with a view to converting this into a permanent move. As we continue to grow the business, we’ll be able to offer our customers a more efficient service as well as reduce our carbon footprint thanks to the fantastic connectivity provided by Peel Port’s multimodal services.”
Roger Megann, head of commercial (containers) from Peel Ports, added: “We’re proud to strengthen our partnership with B&M, testament to the best in class expertise, prime location and facilities available at the Port of Liverpool.
“It also marks a further shift away from southern ports, with problems only expected to worsen as Brexit moves closer, congestion shows no sign of easing and delays get longer.”