Waitrose has selected XPO Logistics to operate its national distribution centre at Magna Park in Milton Keynes.
XPO will also take on operational responsibility for the supermarket’s Brinklow regional DC in the multi-year deal.
At about 940,000 sq ft, Magna Park is equivalent to 12 football pitches and one of the largest DCs ever constructed in the UK. It became operational in 2015. Brinklow is approximately 320,000 sq ft in size, with dedicated chilled, frozen and ambient space.
The deal, the value of which has not been disclosed, covers warehouse operations and transport across the two sites, previously handled by Kuehne & Nagel.
XPO said it expected to manage the picking and dispatch of 93 million cases per year at Magna Park and 50 million cases at Brinklow.
“XPO brings exceptional expertise and experience in omnichannel distribution. We look forward to working with them to implement their plans for two sites that continue to play an integral role within our supply chain network,” said Mark Robinson, director supply chain for the John Lewis Partnership.
The logistics giant works with several grocery sector players in the UK including Tesco, Asda, Iceland and BrewDog. Late last year XPO and Nestlé partnered to open a 638,000 sq ft DC “of the future” in the East Midlands. It is due to open in spring.
“We have developed a well-defined plan for driving efficiencies across multiple services, as we prepare to welcome more than 1,500 new colleagues in the summer,” said XPO UK supply chain chief Gavin Williams.
XPO employs 22,000 people across 170 sites. The fate of its UK supply chain and transport businesses remains uncertain after last month XPO’s CEO Bradley Jacobs said the firm was considering the “possible sale or spin-off of one or more” units globally.