DHL Express is planning to invest £30m in its network of depots and hubs over the next four years.

UK and Ireland chief executive Phil Couchman revealed exclusively to MT that the logistics giant plans to expand capacity nationwide as a result of demand for international express deliveries over the past 12 months.

In 2012 it experienced its biggest peak, which forced DHL Express to increase capacity ahead of Christmas last year.

Couchman said: “Our volumes year-on-year have increased more than 25%, and that seems to be an indication of the breadth and depth of the customer base we’ve

got here.

“In the UK, we have somewhere in the region of a 47% share in the express international business,” he added.

The £30m expansion forms part of a four-year investment across DHL Express’s entire operations, which also includes investment in its London Heathrow and East Midlands air hubs. The company has already increased capacity and upgraded half of its 38 service centres nationwide.

The most recent expansion in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, opened on 1 February, increasing warehouse size from 7,000ft² to 35,000ft².

The Oxfordshire depot will see DHL vans loaded and unloaded at the same time under one roof, which Couchman believes will help to increase efficiency by about 18%. The upgraded service centres all use shelved vans, which help the company organise courier rounds and enable drivers to leave the site about 30 minutes earlier than they did previously.

Couchman said: “We’re doing everything that we possibly can to stay ahead of the game and there are

three things that are imperative in the express market: reliability; value for money; and security. And that’s what we do.”