Western Cape Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  04 Feb 2009

VENTURES: Courier Wings Its Way To Top


Recent Western Cape Business News

IN a relatively short period of time a locally founded courier company has winged its way to become one of the leading operators in the local industry. Importantly, it now also has a considerable global reach.

The company is Dawn Wing, which was founded in 1990 and became a subsidiary of the diversified logistics company, the Laser Group, in 1999.

Today it not only has a national footprint, servicing the whole of South Africa with distribution hubs in all the major centres, but it also offers clients a global reach via its partner DPD, with whom the company has a joint venture partnership in the South African market. DPD is one of Europe’s largest international and logistics company - allowing Dawn Wing to offer access to 220 countries across the globe.

Mike Fannuchi, CEO of Dawn Wing, says his company ranks with well-known names such as DHL and UTI, depending on what measure one uses. This is a brave claim, considering that the top strata of the courier industry has been built on plenty of dollars spent on advertising and marketing to establish massive brand names.

And a big brand name is important, implying security, large geographical footprints and the ability to deliver timeously. However, Dawn Wing has succeeded in building a strong following in the market by creating brand awareness within its target market using a good business strategy; being quick, smart and reliable, says Fannuchi.

“Everyone at Dawn Wing understands that clients are not simply waybill numbers. So every single person in the team takes personal responsibility for every single parcel that is moved.”

“We remain ahead of the technological advancement in the South African freight industry. This enables us to create customised solutions to meet our clients’ needs, saves costs and provides peace of mind with exceptional tracking and advanced financial and consignment processing information,” he says.

The company keeps on investing heavily in technology. So, for example, it has, in partnership with Dovetail Business Solutions recently set a new standard for the courier and logistics industry. It has developed and deployed a handheld computer that interfaces with their mobile workforce. The solution, commonly known as a handheld device, has been rolled out nationally.

It introduces an accuracy and transparency to the courier process that is unprecedented in the industry via a simple, secure and seamless platform for the exchange of information between three critical points in the courier process: the driver on the road, the operational hub and the client.

In line with global trends, Dawn Wing and Dovetail collaborated to develop a powerful, technology driven solution that places it at the cutting edge of the industry in terms of providing relevant, live information to customers whilst simultaneously improving on costing, service and environmental standards.

The e-communication era has significantly put pressure on the industry to provide advanced systems and technology. There is a global trend towards mobility and customers now require information in real time including live parcel tracking. However, equally important is that the mobile technology has provided a solid risk management solution – allowing the courier process to be closely monitored.

In addition, the introduction of the system has also delivered significant business results by decreasing operating costs and increasing service levels, especially in the business-to-consumer market.

Fanucchi says the courier business, locally and internationally, is showing much volatility in line with recent financial and trade events globally.

Yet, in a roundabout way, this has benefited Dawn Wing, which was able to still show healthy growth. He points out that a number of players went out of business due to falling volumes, but the company was waiting in the wing, so to speak, and picked up a lot of this.

Also, the company is a nifty operator in opening up new niche markets, thereby expanding its field of operation.

The latest innovation, branded Dawn Wing Fine Wine Express, provides for customers to send wine to friends (or customers) locally or most everywhere else in the world.

“It is, naturally, door to door delivery with electronic scanning of parcels, tracking and online account management. Superior quality packaging includes styrofoam inserts, double corrugated carton with easy to carry handles.”

This doesn’t seem to be a flight of fancy. Says Fannuchi, “We’ll ensure that any expectations are exceeded. We promise.”

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