WHSmith has announced the appointment of GXO as its new outsourced UK logistics partner.
WHSmith has over 1,100 stores across the UK in both travel and high street locations which were previously serviced by the retailer from three in-house distribution centres in Swindon, Birmingham and Dunstable.
Under the new agreement, all three of these distribution centres will transfer to GXO, which will operate the end-to-end supply of WHSmith’s UK retail businesses. All 440 colleagues who work in these three centres will transfer to GXO via the TUPE process. By partnering with GXO, WHSmith is aiming to establish a more efficient and effective supply chain to support the performance of its UK Travel and High Street businesses.
WHSmith has also recently awarded its transport operations to GXO, starting from February 2024. GXO will be optimising the transport planning for WHSmith’s core distribution network as well as utilising its shared-user transport capabilities to provide full coverage for stores across the UK.
Sean Feeney, Supply Chain Director, WHSmith, commented:
“WHSmith’s growth as a global travel retailer is accelerating and we need a supply chain which can match this and support our future plans. We are pleased to have appointed GXO as our UK logistics provider to work with us in creating a modern and efficient supply chain which delivers for our UK businesses and customers.”
Gavin Williams, Managing Director, U.K. and Ireland, GXO, commented:
“We’re delighted to partner with WHSmith to deliver end-to-end supply chain management as part of its network modernisation. With our extensive retail warehousing and transportation expertise, as well as our technology-driven commitment to continuous improvement, we’re perfectly positioned to support WHSmith’s growth plans.”
Separately, GXO has announced two new leadership appointments. Richard Cawston, President of Europe, has expanded his current responsibilities to assume the newly-created role of Chief Revenue Officer (CRO). GXO is also strengthening its Sales organization in the Americas and Asia Pacific with the addition of Eric Spadafora who joins GXO as head of sales for the region.
The Chief Revenue Officer, reporting to CEO Malcolm Wilson, has global responsibility for sales strategy, including prioritizing the most attractive customer segments, verticals and markets. In addition, the CRO will elevate sales pipeline management, centralizing account management for customers partnering with GXO across multiple sites and countries to fully leverage GXO’s global scale, expertise, and value proposition. GXO’s Commercial teams, including sales operations, customer account management and business development, will report to Cawston.
“Our long-term growth is underpinned by continued new business wins, and with demand for our services and expertise increasing, we are aligning our organization to accelerate growth with intensity and intention,” said Malcolm Wilson, Chief Executive Officer, GXO. “Richard brings the right blend of operational expertise, a deep understanding of customer needs, and a proven track record of developing long-term customer relationships rooted in continuous value creation to leverage the full power of our footprint to drive business growth.”
Cawston has more than two decades of experience in the logistics industry working for multinationals including XPO Logistics Europe, where he served as President, and Managing Director of Norbert Dentressangle’s flagship operations in the U.K. and Ireland. Since 2018, he has served as GXO’s president of Europe, a dynamic region of 14 countries with approximately 500 warehouses, serving many of Europe’s leading brands across omnichannel retail and consumer packaged goods, food and beverage and consumer electronics, among others.
Eric Spadafora joins GXO from Logitech where he served as Vice President and head of business sales. Previously, he held sales roles at MCI and Verizon where, as Vice President, he delivered industry leading customer satisfaction, record sales growth and robust employee engagement. In addition to his extensive experience in the telecommunications and technology sectors, Eric will leverage the high touch service capabilities gained from GXO’s acquisition of PFSweb, completed in October 2023, to deepen GXO’s penetration into high growth verticals, with a focus on North America.
GXO continues to grow its business through new contract wins and has a robust sales pipeline that is diversified across operating geographies and both consumer and industrial verticals. Through the third quarter of 2023, GXO has won $841 million of new business.