As someone with little to no background in logistics, it is still clear to me after reading your post that DHL’s business and operating models are definitely in conflict. If the customer promise is flexibility but the local terminals have no power to deliver this promise, as you note, things will begin to break down. It seems that DHL must chose either to revise its customer value proposition or allow more autonomy at the terminal level. In this case, it seems as though the most realistic solution would be to re-position the company as a low-cost, reliable carrier versus one that caters to their every need. Maybe it is possible to have both? It seems they should definitely standardize and centralize the operations for the longer, higher capacity line hauls, but might they also offer flexibility and customized routes and cutoffs for customers with significant volume of their own?
Fascinating, to be honest I had no idea this company existed. The combination of colocation and long-term contracts really do make this an investor’s dream. I’m always intrigued by business that have such a low cost of adding incremental customers and revenue. One thing I didn’t quite understand is why those incremental customers would pay higher rents? My intuition would be that they could negotiate better rates than the first tenant, since adding them makes a single tower so much more economical for American Tower. Especially if it is a build-to-suit tower, I would think that the anchor tenant would pay more for any specialized capabilities it requested.
Fascinating look behind the scenes at the logistics in the grocery industry! Great example of how a third party was able to solve a problem and monetize it when the other participants had not been motivated to find a solution. I love how the trays fold flat to save space when en route back to the center. The concept of moving the deposit around was also a very interesting part of the business model to encourage collaboration and ownership by every participant. Is this service limited to Europe or are there similar concepts in the US as well? My hunch would be that this is of even greater value to the large format stores which are popular in the US, versus the smaller corner stores that seem to be more prevalent in Europe. It would seem that small stores are less equipped to deal with the storage of these large crates.