Maersk doubles down on growth and Omnichannel Fulfilment (OCF) in Australia with the opening of seven new facilities. 

International logistics and shipping leader Maersk is strengthening its omnichannel-fulfilment capabilities in Australia, with the opening of seven new facilities across the country. As the integrated container and logistics company celebrates its 30th anniversary in Australia, plans are in place to grow its already extensive operations and land-side capabilities.  

The seven new facilities are being delivered over the 12 months to Q1 2024 as part of Maersk’s global integrator strategy with clear opportunities identified to expand the regional logistics landscape. This will bring the company’s total number of sites in Australia to eight in total, serviced by 550 full-time employees. Four sites opened earlier this year and three more are coming online between now and Q1 2024. Two of these facilities were integrated into the Maersk network as part of its acquisition of LF Logistics. 

Maersk invited AMT magazine to the new Derrimut warehouse in Melbourne to meet with staff and view the complex matrix system on the occasion of the company’s 30th anniversary in Australia. The huge network space was rolling with robots, pickers, and a massive blizzard of tracks. Each single package is clearly trackable from the moment a customer orders the goods, to the point the parcel is sent to through to Australia Post or another contractor for ‘final-mile’ delivery. 

Maersk now boasts five gateway ports and owned warehouse services in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, with additional co-owned warehouse services in Perth and Adelaide. Maersk’s addition of seven facilities in Australia brings its footprint from 15,900 sqm in Q1 2023 to 142,500 sqm by the end of Q1 2024, adding a total of 126,600 sqm in 12 months.

Maersk’s Ditlev Blicher, President of Maersk’s Asia Pacific operations says the company’s digital investment is another link to ensure each step of the supply chain is in service to the next. “But who knew beforehand, what the challenges would be in the last four years,” says Blicher. “Agility in the supply chain has been missing but with our systems, we now have the physical ability to toggle and change along the way, to ensure the product is there on time.”

The majority of shipping out of Australia these days is for agricultural produce going to OS clients. So containers on the outward journey have to be food-grade, and sometimes refrigerated containers. This is a huge logistics challenge. “We are always impacted by trade agreements, and we keep a close eye on domestic economics, trade agreements and political manoeuvres in all directions, as it influences our next moves to service our clients,” added Blicher.

Among the numerous focal points for expansion for Maersk over the next year is sustainability. “Our expansion throughout Australia is giving our customers a more efficient and sustainable service right throughout the supply chain,” said Maersk’s Managing Director of Oceania, Kylie Fraser. “Australia imports a high volume of consumer goods, and we are excited to be able to continue to efficiently deliver goods while growing our business and contributing significantly to regional economic growth.” 

Six of the seven new sites will be omnichannel facilities, harnessing a variety of channels to interact with customers to fulfil orders. Omnichannel capabilities provide Maersk with better levels of availability and service, reduced working capital and better efficiency. It allows for an improved focus on sustainability by utilising renewable energy sources such as solar panels, smart power management systems and low-energy consumption equipment.