Haier chooses Savannah to serve Southeast
Haier America has chosen Georgia as its logistics hub serving the Southeast U.S.
The global firm will move its home appliances and air conditioners through its distribution center located at the Interstate Centre in Black Creek, just outside of Savannah, Ga.
Larry Monaghan, Haier’s senior vice president of administration, said the Port of Savannah and its adjacent distribution center network were a good fit for the company’s needs.
“Haier’s projected growth pattern coincides with the already approved work on deepening the Savannah port and the opening of the new Panama Canal,” Monaghan said. “Once both of these major projects are completed, we believe that Savannah will become the destination port for distribution into the Eastern U.S.”
The company indicated that the flexibility offered by the number of shipping services calling on Savannah – more than any other port in the Southeast – also played a role in its decision to choose Georgia. Monaghan said Haier will move an annual volume of 4,500 twenty-foot equivalent container units (TEUs) through Savannah.
After an extensive request for proposal process, the appliance maker chose third-party logistics provider Kenco to run the Black Creek warehouse operation.
To service the new client, Kenco has taken 230,000 square feet at the Interstate Centre located at I-16 and US 280, 18 miles from the Georgia Ports Authority terminals. Kenco plans to employ over 50 people when the distribution center reaches full staff.
“Kenco is proud to have been selected by this market leader,” said David Caines, president, Kenco Logistic Services. “We leveraged our years of experience in managing appliance supply chains to develop a common sense solution that will deliver uncommon value to Haier.”
Kenco officials said they chose the distribution center’s location because of its proximity to the Port of Savannah and the area’s solid infrastructure. The Bryan County facility will be Kenco’s fourth in Georgia and first in the Savannah area
“This distribution center is the first of its kind in the U.S. for Haier, because it handles their complete product line. Previously, the company used dedicated distribution facilities for specific products,” said Georgia Ports Authority Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “That makes an important statement about Haier’s trust in GPA’s reliable service and speed to market.”
Haier’s Monaghan said that beyond the area’s available warehouse space, Savannah’s geographic location – including its proximity to Interstates 16 and 95 – will help the company to better serve a major portion of its retailers and customer base in states ranging from Georgia and Florida to Texas.
Georgia leads the nation in warehouse and distribution center development, according to the latest figures available from global real estate firm Colliers International.
With 3.4 million square feet of warehouse space under construction by October 2012, Georgia nearly doubled Tennessee’s rate of increase, which ranked second at 1.8 million square feet. Ohio was third at 1.7 million square feet; California and Arizona rounded out the top five with each marking 1.5 million square feet of distribution center space under development.