Orange has opted for experience when it comes to distributing its mobile handsets, and extended its contract with Hays. Hays will focus on helping to develop efficiencies in handling returned goods and coping with ballooning inventories. The continued partnership is a victory for cooperation and investment.
Mobile phone operator Orange has retained Hays as its primary distributor in the UK.
Logistics group Hays has entered into a three-year contract with Orange UK, in a deal that will see a combined investment of over GBP3 million. Hays has been working with Orange since 1994, and over the eight-year period has seen its operation increase dramatically with the continued expansion of the mobile phone market.
Hays will continue to manage the receipt, storage and checking of phones, accessories, literature and vouchers. The company is also responsible for more value added activities such as building and kitting handsets and SIM cards to unique handset codes.
Much of the GBP3 million investment will be used to consolidate and upgrade returns facilities at Hays’ Banbury site. Operational disruption caused by returns is a common danger in a highly competitive market such as mobile phone retailing, in which consumers are increasingly aware that operators will guarantee almost anything to retain their custom; a guaranteed returns policy tends to simply guarantee plenty of returns.
Having worked together for some time Hays and Orange are clearly aware of the dangers, and it is always refreshing to see two major UK companies working together to create logistical efficiencies.
However, this is an area of operation that is increasingly complicated. With the recent influx of handset manufacturers and ever-increasing numbers of products and product versions to deal with, both parties will be hoping the facility doesn’t end up on hold.
Related Research: Datamonitor, European Logistics Benchmarking 2002 (IMAU0016)
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