The importance of Ireland’s growing e-commerce sector has been demonstrated by two leading Irish politicians opening a new €2m warehouse facility for the country’s biggest independent delivery firm, Nightline.
Ireland’s Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, Alex White TD, hailed Nightline Group’s progress as a shot in the arm for the economy, as he formally opened the new depot.
The 30,000-square facility is dedicated to servicing Nightline’s award-winning network of Parcel Motel locker terminals and has created an additional 20 jobs.
Ireland is estimated to be become western Europe’s fourth biggest online marketplace, spending some €4.6bn during 2013. Mr White described the developments as “great news” for Parcel Motel’s subscribers, adding: “It will also drive competition in the sector and ensure that Ireland remains a well-connected and efficient network for private residents and businesses alike.”
He was joined at the opening by John Lyons TD, the member for the Dublin North-West constituency, where the new depot is located – on Dublin’s North City Business Park. It has three times the number of workstations than Nightline’s Mygan Park headquarters.
Parcel Motel general manager, Orla Sheils, said: “The volume of online orders placed by Irish shoppers is one of the fastest-growing in all of Europe.” Adding that Nightline’s Parcel Motels now have more than 160,000 regular users and handled 1.5m parcels last year, which was more than double the previous year’s figure.
Eight of the company’s 11 sites across the Irish Republic are also going to become alternative parcel pick-up points for subscribers to the Parcel Motel system.
Sheils went on to stress that shoppers “need the kind of flexibility, convenience and economy in deliveries which Parcel Motel offers. As the number of goods bought via the internet continues to rise, we recognise the value of providing even more capacity to cope, hence a depot solely processing parcels destined for lockers across the country.
“We are confident that it means our being able to cope with the expectations of consumers and retailers as we prepare head into the busiest period of the year for the parcel industry.”
Along with the new site, facilities have been established to allow consumers to collect packages directly from Nightline’s premises in Athlone, Tralee, Waterford, Sligo, Cork, Galway and Limerick rather than from a Parcel Motel terminal.
Pictured (left-to-right) John Tuohy CEO of Nightline, John Lyons TD, Alex White TD and Orla Sheils.