I recently attended the IAS/IPF seminar which discussed the impact of e-commerce on the logistics market. This is something that we have been researching for a while at Jones Lang LaSalle and the event very much confirmed our own views on e-commerce. There is increasing interest from occupiers, developers and investors to understand the impact that e-commerce has on warehouse requirements.
The growth in online sales has led to a new wave of demand for warehouses, both new and second hand. For example parcel delivery company Geopost recently took a new bespoke warehouse in Enfield which included around 26 loading doors for small delivery vans, whereas Ocado has taken a number of second hand sheds across the country close to densely populated urban areas to act as transhipment purposes, with picking undertaken at larger Central Fulfilment Facilities.
The talk highlighted the challenges that the impact of ecommerce is having on the warehouse market, particularly as there is no one solution that caters for all requirements. Our recent report on ecommerce highlights the different types of operations that take place in a warehouse to fulfil demand from ecommerce.
The final theme I picked up from the seminar is that the real estate sector needs to address the changes that ecommerce is having on the market and with online sales forecast to continue to grow the market needs to catch up so that it can satisfy future demand.