Abbey Logistics and British Sugar

In 2016, Abbey Logistics took over the British Sugar transport contract, a large scale operation that sees 400,000 tonnes of bulk sugar delivered a year and 300 UK deliveries each week.

The joint Abbey Logistics and British Sugar team has developed a fully integrated, cost-effective and secure business alliance, which according to the entry “practises, shares and promotes teamwork in every aspect of the contract”. The results included 99% on-time delivery in 2018/19, transport cost per tonne reduced by 13% generating a cost saving of nearly £3m, and an 80% reduction in personal injuries.

Our judges were impressed with the seamless integration of the joint team from Abbey and British Sugar. “Abbey Logistics is completely embedded into the team at British Sugar,” said one. “Abbey Logistics and British Sugar are a great example of mutually beneficial and successful open-book collaboration.”



In April 2017, Arrow XL’s hub on the Blackpole Trading Estate in Worcester was destroyed in a fire. The company decided to rebuild on the same site and in October 2019, thanks to the work of a team set up to manage the project, the operation made a smooth transition to its new facility.

The new hub is a 15m high, 185,000sq ft warehouse with a 55,000sq ft mezzanine, providing 14,000 pallet spaces for warehousing and fulfilment customers. Handling over 55,000 items each week, it was vital that the facility came online with no disruption for customers.

The project was delivered on time, on budget, and customers were unaware of the transition. Judges said the team from all disciplines “showed a united front during this critical transition” and used “re-iterative feedback workshops” to achieve all its objectives.



DPD’s 14,000 people deliver 263 million parcels a year for over 7,500 customers, and the peak period from Black Friday to Christmas Eve is the busiest period of the year. DPD recognised it was crucial in 2019 to give its customers “truly amazing service” and so launched its Intelligent Operations Centre.

The centre was staffed 24/7 by an 18-strong team of analysts and hub operations personnel for six weeks up to Christmas Eve to deliver the best possible peak for customers. In previous peaks, different teams across DPD had struggled to make important decisions as they lacked a full picture of the operation, and the new central team gave a holistic view of the network to employ the right resources in the right places at the right time.

Our judges were impressed that despite its market leadership, DPD is “never complacent” and “continues to strive to improve its offering to both client and end consumer”.

Fortec Distribution Network


Project Transform was launched by Fortec's operations team to substantially improve operations and deliver a better service for customers after a turbulent year of changes and challenges in 2018. The project’s goals included a £3m transformation of the Watford Gap hub, introducing a new training matrix, a site-wide clean-up and new processes around safety, quality, productivity and communications.

The 10 priority KPIs included improving hub turnaround by 10% , raising scanning accuracy to 100%, and cutting pallet damages by 45%.

Led by general manager, operations Stuart White, this 12-month project came in on time and under budget, over-achieving on its KPIs thanks to team buy-in, cross-departmental collaboration and support from network members.

One of our judges said the project had “created a stronger Fortec team ethos” and was a “great example of a business-wide team working to substantially improve performance at all levels”.

“If I was the MD I would be very proud of this team”, added another.



The Palletforce ‘SuperHub’ operations team was tasked with delivering a project to handle 10% more freight volume in line with the network’s growth targets during 2019, while reducing turnaround times and maintaining sector-leading service excellence in terms of safety, productivity and performance.

Working with all 120 member companies and various Palletforce divisions, the team successfully delivered the project and exceeded target on a range of operational KPIs including handling 4 million pallets in 2019 – 10% up on 2018 – while seeing the number of trailers loaded by 2am increase by 24% to 164. It also delivered significant safety, service, quality, performance and commercial benefits to the entire membership and members’ customers.

Our judges liked the “productivity improvements” and said they could only have been achieved “in close collaboration with both employees and partner members”.