Rome - Zalando has chosen Italy for its expansion and the doubling of its presence with the creation of a true distribution hub which will employ about a thousand workers. On the day when the half yearly accounts are distributed (with a revenue increase of 21.5% to 2,080 billion), the German online shoe, apparel and accessory giant announced the opening of two new bases outside of Germany. One in Poland and the other, a 130,000 sqm mega-warehouse in Northern Italy, although its location has not yet been announced.
The new facility in Italy “will be comparable in size to the existing ones in Lahr, Erfurt and Moenchengladbach,” Zalando explained, “and will operate in parallel with the Stradella (Pavia) satellite warehouse” but “will also serve other European markets, with a focus on Southern Europe.” The construction of the facility will begin in the next six to eight months.
From the moment that the warehouse becomes operational, “we are counting on hiring about a thousand employees in the medium-term,” said Matteo Bovio, a Senior Manager for Corporate Communications at Zalando. To a large extent, it will handle “warehouse functions,” although “there will also be highly qualified workers there.” ”Different levels of experience” could be required, but “there will also be jobs available for those who do not have any particular kinds of qualifications,” and Zalando will also carry out training. Its expansion in Italy must not be framed as a challenge to “a direct competitor” like Amazon, Bovio explained, but rather because Italy is one of the countries with the “greatest potential” for growth. “Since we entered the Italian market we have had strong growth in our business. We have a very specific offering. The online fashion market in Italy is growing at approximately 15-20% per year and we are the leader in our segment: seasonal fashion, we do not have old collections and we aim to grow faster than the market.”