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Ventura to offer retailers its distribution services

Distribution company Ventura, which is wholly owned by Next, has launched a division called Ventura Network Distribution to offer third-party fashion retailers its distribution and warehousing capabilities.

Business development mana-ger Arron Kendall said Ventura Network Distribution would capitalise on the retailer’s in-house distribution expertise and that it was aimed at retailers with 50 to 300 stores. Ventura Network Distribution will warehouse and distribute product for external retailers and etailers that typically use parcel carriers or do not have the capital to develop their own systems.

Kendall said: “Ventura delivers to more than 500 outlets every week and we see synergy in offering our network to other retailers. We have invested in solutions such as auto-picking to reduce cost per unit. Next demands a fantastic service from us and we now want to offer it to other retailers. We are talking to people and are ready to sign some deals.”

Ventura opened two warehouses in Rotherham last month to support the new venture. Kendall said: “We have capacity because we invest in the future.”

This is not the first retailer to offer third party warehousing and distribution. Home shopping firm N Brown set up Zendor, a fulfilment service for mail order companies, and sold it for £3.83 million in December.

Ventura, which until now has focused on running customer contact centres for the likes of O2, British Gas and BMI, generated sales of £190.9m for the year ended January 2007, with profits of £20.6m.

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