After deciding to open an additional East Coast fulfillment center, TV shopping giant QVC searched long and hard for the location best suited for fast, cost-effective fulfillment to its customers.
The decision: Rocky Mount, NC, where QVC built a 1.1 million-square-foot fulfillment center in 2000. Located about an hour east of Raleigh, Rocky Mount is situated adjacent to I-95 – East Coast’s main street – for fast, efficient East Coast distribution.
If you are searching for an East Coast fulfillment center, it may be wise to follow QVC’s lead. Here are just some of the fulfillment advantages QVC and other companies have found in Rocky Mount.
Advantages of a Rocky Mount, NC East Coast Fulfillment Center
Proximity to ports
Just a little over two hours away are the ports of Norfolk/Hampton Roads, VA and Wilmington, NC. From either port, you can arrange a container rail or truck shuttle inland to Rocky Mount, where your goods will be better positioned for faster, cheaper distribution.
Rocky Mount is halfway between Boston and Miami. From here you can reach 70% of the U.S. population in one day over the road. Both New York City and Atlanta are 9-hour drives.
A Rocky Mount fulfillment center lets you capitalize on the cost-saving advantages of rail freight. The city is a major terminal for CSX. Some third-party fulfillment companies, like Kanban Logistics, have rail siding at their Rocky Mount warehouse. CSX provides direct rail links to North Carolina’s ports of Wilmington and Morehead City.
Low Distribution Costs
Rocky Mount offers the lowest warehouse operating costs in North Carolina and the region, compared to Atlanta, Hampton Roads, Raleigh-Durham and other hubs. Both space and labor rates are lower than competing markets.
According to the Carolinas Gateway Partnership, QVC is just one of many major companies that has recognized the logistical advantages of Rocky Mount as an East Coast fulfillment center. Here’s what the Cheesecake Factory says:
“Our goal was to establish an operation that was located optimally for supply chain efficiency, was easily scalable to support our future growth plans, and where the local culture was warm and friendly. We found all of this with Rocky Mount, NC.”
– Keith Carango, SVP Bakery Operations at The Cheesecake Factory