Interview with Mr. Jonathan Chadburn

Mr. Jonathan Chadburn
Mr. Jonathan Chadburn
VP-Global Retail
DHL Supply Chain
DHL Supply Chain

..we will see high growth in Eastern & Central Europe, particularly Turkey, as well the Far East, especially for high fashion and luxury brands.
In 1969, the trio Adrian Dalsey, Larry Hillblom, and Robert Lynn, founded a courier service named after their initials D, H & L, between the mainland U.S. and Hawaii and expanded the company thereon. Gradually, in year 2002, DHL became part of the world's leading logistics group, Deutsche Post. DHL offers integrated services and tailored, customer-focused solutions for managing and transporting letters, goods and information. DHL Supply Chain division has plethora of services for the dynamic fashion & retail sector. It includes Distribution Centre Management, Distribution to Stores, International Supply Chain Management. Besides, it also offers additional services viz Supply Chain Analysis and Design, Pre-retail Services, Reverse Logistics, In-store Logistics and Home Delivery amongst others. With more than 120,000 employees, the division has marked presence in more than 60 countries and territories through 2400 terminals, warehouses and offices, and approx. 23,000,000 sqm storage areas. Mr. Jonathan Chadburn is the VP - Global Retail, DHL Supply Chain. He has 25 years experience in the Logistics industry with DHL and Exel. At DHL, before 5 years, as a UK Divisional MD, he was responsible for the business in the Home Delivery sector. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics, gained from Cardiff University, as well as an MBA. Previously, he has managed executive level relationships with BHS, Argos, Homebase, Next and Habitat amongst others. Besides work, he is active in the local Rugby community including coaching, refereeing and managing rugby teams and supporting his two children. Mr. Jonathan Chadburn, in a discourse with Ms Madhu Soni, Sr. Editor & Correspondent- Face2Face, brings out current happenings in global logistics market in apparel retail.

It is a pleasure to talk about DHL one more time in Face2Face. Post the previous interview (2006), industry has been through difficult times of economic crisis. Have they affected logistics giant like DHL too? Have there been any major developments in its strategic or operating approach in this span?

Of course, like many other companies, DHL was initially impacted by the global downturn, but thankfully, we have seen revenues bounce back strongly. DHL looked at where we operated and made certain portfolio decisions but we also looked at new opportunities that the downturn had created.

So, where is current global logistics industry for textile & allied sectors making its headway to?

This is truly a global market, with many brands and retailers now expanding extremely quickly across international borders, hence global logistics players like DHL are even more relevant in this sector than before; the ability to extend geographic reach is a key requirement.

In line to what you said- ‘geographic reach to be a key requirement’, can you please delve out about these Emerging Logistics Markets in times ahead?

I think we will see high growth in Eastern & Central Europe, particularly Turkey, as well the Far East, especially for high fashion and luxury brands. Brazil should have a very strong hand for next few years, especially as they will host both the World Cup and Olympic Games.

Interesting! <br></br> Industry views South East Asian zone to be the strong markets currently. In addition, we have seen DHL invested considerable in the Asian belt. So, how is that leveraged in terms of textile & garment allied services? How do you foresee your growth in this region further?

We are targeting Asia as a key growth market for us especially in fashion, and of course in the area of e-fulfillment. China is obviously a key market, but increasingly India as well as Korea and Thailand. DHL Supply Chain is present in 14 countries across the Asia Pacific region so we feel we are very able to help our customers develop simple and sustainable solutions and – in turn – grow our market share.

Wearing down its earlier image of mere a ‘Carrier & Disposer’, how have Innovations come to play in logistics market scenario? What makes DHL fastest on the Innovation course?

Innovation is a key element of DHL’s success. In 2009, Deutsche Post DHL created DHL Solutions & Innovations (DSI) to bring together all existing areas of innovation. With the DHL Innovation Center near Bonn in Germany, which is unique in the logistics field, a place has been created where DSI's combined capacity for innovation is made tangible and brought to life for visitors.

In time we think RFID will become a big component in the fashion industry especially as the price continues to fall it will help speeding through the supply chain as more processes become automatic. In addition, the increasing use of hubs enables product to be cross-docked across continents, and of course with our global coverage, DHL is well placed to increase speed to market.

Is DHL undertaking any initiatives to make logistics more environment- friendly?

As part of its environmental protection program GoGreen, Deutsche Post DHL was actually the first logistics company to set itself a quantified carbon efficiency goal. We are committed to improving the CO2 efficiency of our own operations and those of our transportation subcontractors by 30 per cent by 2020, compared to our 2007 baseline. Of course, we have a number of GoGreen products specifically designed to minimize our carbon footprint, from our teardrop trailers to energy efficient lighting in our warehouses. However, making supply chains more efficient for our customers is crucial not only in environmental footprint but also from economical context.

True. Well, that was all we wanted to know this time. Thanks for joining us on Face2Face, Mr. Chadburn

You are welcome.


Click here to view previous Face2Face with DHL
Published on: 26/09/2011

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of

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