A friend sent me a picture of an Amazon delivery van the other day. It was a fully branded pickup truck with the Prime logos, the works. I have noticed that when my packages are delivered now, they usually come from delivery people wearing Amazon vests. All of this led me to say “this distribution center must be closed” just yesterday. Today it is confirmed. Amazon will open a fulfillment center in spring 2022.
Amazon’s new fulfillment center
Many expected, and perhaps even hoped, that Brexit would impact Amazon’s popularity in Ireland. We have polled the Irish public on this and it does not appear to be the case. 40% of those surveyed said they bought from Amazon shortly after Brexit. Amazon handled the transition well. I’m a Prime customer myself and have to say that when I can’t find something reasonably priced local, I turn to Jeff and the gang. Deliveries are fast and customer service is excellent. I try to limit my usage since there are some obscure aspects to Amazon’s business, but it is undeniably a great online store for shoppers.
What I mean here is that Amazon is a large retailer operating in Ireland and so far only had a very limited presence with a distribution center. Today’s news means Amazon will instead start stocking products in Ireland and shipping them directly from that new base. The 630,000 square foot center will be located at Baldonnell Business Park in Dublin and operations will begin in spring 2022. The base is expected to create 500 new jobs, with Amazon specifically stressing that it will be a “safe work environment” for “employees to help meet the growing demand of our customers ”.
What does the new Amazon fulfillment center mean?
For you as a buyer this means faster deliveries. As a Prime customer, I get free next day delivery. However, these packages are shipped from the UK. It just means my packages take an extra day to get here. The new Amazon fulfillment center will likely mean that the vast majority of packages purchased today will be delivered the next day for Prime customers and generally faster for all customers.
So far, Amazon has simply routed packages through a fulfillment center, but now they will store “millions of items to pick, pack and ship to customers across Ireland as well as the rest of Europe.” .
This will not be good news for many Irish businesses which are still finding their feet in the wake of a pandemic. If Brexit gives consumers confidence when they are on the Amazon UK website, it will surely solve the problem for many.
Will there be an Amazon.ie now?
This would make sense given that Amazon has confirmed that this new fulfillment center will also deliver throughout Europe. Countries like Germany, France, and Spain have their own websites, so why would Ireland be any different.
There is also the very practical issue of currency.
When shopping on Amazon UK, if you use Amazon’s exchange rate, you will almost always pay a lot more. This is because they are using a horrible exchange rate. The quick fix is Revolut. Just pay in pounds sterling and let Revolut do the trade for you. I saved a fortune doing this.
If Amazon starts a website, for example, how will prices in euros compare to those in sterling? There are plenty of questions that I have like that. And look, maybe Amazon has no intention of opening an Irish website at all.
Amazon’s official line is that for now, they are focused on getting this hub up and running. The benefit will be faster delivery times throughout Ireland as well as one day delivery for hundreds of thousands of items. You will still be able to order beyond the Irish distribution center.
New Amazon logistics center
Along with today’s big news, Amazon also announced the opening of a second Amazon logistics delivery station this fall in the Northwest Ballycoolin Logistics Park. This center will deliver to customers in and around Dublin. Ireland’s first delivery station opened last October in Rathcoole, creating over 20 permanent jobs and working with 10 independent delivery companies that have hired over 150 drivers.
The new center will create another 20 permanent jobs, in addition to dozens of driver opportunities for Amazon Logistics delivery service partners and Amazon Flex delivery partners. The 83,500 square foot building is expected to be fully operational this fall.
Image presented by Rodrigo Alonso.
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