With the acquisition of a regional parcel service provider, GLS commenced its careful geographic expansion into a new continent in 2016. The GLS Group is now active in western USA and in Canada, and is thus expanding into strong markets with great potential.
GLS active in North America
GLS US – parcels, freight, express
GLS covers eight US states with a total area of almost 2.2 million square kilometres. This corresponds to around half of the area of the EU.
In this vast area GLS US delivers over 1 million parcels and more than 10,000 freight shipments per month – all from a single source and with combined pick-ups. “As we focus on a specific region, we can make our transportation more efficient and flexible than our nationwide competitors”, explains Randall K. Swart, President GLS US. The result of this is speed and reliability. Most shipments reach the customer within one to two days.
Priority service, similar to express services in Europe, offers additional benefits – late pick-up times, overnight transport and early deliveries by 8 a.m. or 10.30 a.m., including on Saturdays. Although GLS US is faster than global providers in the region, its rates are lower than those of its competitors. Whether next-day delivery is possible depends, of course, on the distance involved.
Grape, harvest, delivery
Over 90 per cent of American wine is produced on the West Coast. Several thousand businesses in the wine industry count on GLS US to ship their goods, making GLS US the number one regional delivery provider in the industry.
GLS US operates successfully for several industries. “We are primarily involved in the B2B segment”, says Randall K. Swart. However, like in Europe, more and more companies are using online commerce as an additional sales channel. “B2C parcels currently account for almost 30 per cent of our business. We expect this segment to become an important aspect of our company’s growth.”
Randall K. Swart, President GLS US
GLS Canada – from coast to coast
From the Atlantic to the Pacific to the Arctic Ocean: with an area of over 10 million square kilometres, Canada is the world’s second-largest country, and the tenth-largest economy[i]. The provinces of Ontario and Quebec account for 57 per cent of Canadian GDP[ii]. The majority of the country’s 37 million inhabitants live here, and this is also the area on which GLS Canada focuses.
The company operates 27 own depots and 3 hubs in the densely populated eastern Canada. In cooperation with partners, GLS offers pan-Canadian logistics services, across six time zones. These also include integrated freight and logistics services.
Quick “can do” team
The GLS network in Ontario and Quebec scores highly across both provinces with fast delivery times, late pick-up times and early morning deliveries on request. 95 per cent of parcel deliveries in this region are completed within 24 hours or less. And this is no small feat, as the company transports around 1.2 million parcels and 2,400 tonnes of freight per month. This is made possible by over 1,200 service and support staff.
“Our regional network is the most comprehensive and effective on the market”, says Rick Barnes, President of the Canadian GLS company. “We make practically anything possible for our customers, and all at very competitive prices.” This also includes adapting to the increasing demand for deliveries in the B2C segment. Depending on the distance, same-day deliveries are possible. Rick Barnes: “Simply stated, at GLS Canada, we go farther, faster!” For international online shopping, which is very popular in Canada, the connection to the pan-European GLS network will offer further benefits in the near future.
[i] The World Bank GDP ranking (2017)
[ii] Statistics Canada (2017)
Milestones in North America
In 2016, GLS completed its first acquisition outside of Europe, with the takeover of the regional next-day parcel service Golden State Overnight (GSO). The company is primarily active in California, as well as in Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico.
The next step followed in 2017 when GLS acquired the regional overnight parcel service Postal Express, which is active in the states of Washington, Oregon and Idaho. The parcel services are grouped together under the umbrella of GLS US, which extended its delivery area to Utah in July 2018.
In September 2018, GLS announced the takeover of the Canadian parcel service provider Dicom Canada.