DHL Israel opens largest, most advanced sorting center in Middle East

The new facility cost around $50 million, the company's largest investment in Israel so far.

A general view shows the DHL robotic package processing site, which the company claims is the largest and most advanced of its kind in the Middle East, in Lod, Israel, January 11, 2022. (photo credit: REUTERS/ILAN ROSENBERG)
A general view shows the DHL robotic package processing site, which the company claims is the largest and most advanced of its kind in the Middle East, in Lod, Israel, January 11, 2022.
(photo credit: REUTERS/ILAN ROSENBERG)

Shipping logistics giant DHL Express on Wednesday opened the largest and most advanced automated sorting center in Israel.

The new facility cost around $50 million, the company's largest investment in Israel so far. It measures 9,000 square meters across three floors and includes 2,000 m. of conveyor belts. It can process 19,000 packages per hour and, because it is automated, each package is sorted and given to a courier in just 2.5 minutes.

Optimized for sustainability and energy efficiency, the facility utilizes solar panels and reuses water to wash cars. Additionally, it has infrastructure to support a full fleet of electric vehicles. DHL designed the facility to meet its goal of reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2030.

Anticipating the potential drawbacks of automation on workers, the company moved some employees to new positions and, in some cases, increased their wages.

The new facility is the magnum opus of DHL Express Israel managing director Yair Bitton, who led the development of the center with Ground Ops director Nissim Zarfati.

Packages are sorted at a DHL robotic package processing site, which the company claims is the largest and most advanced of its kind in the Middle East, in Lod, Israel, January 11, 2022. (credit: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun)Packages are sorted at a DHL robotic package processing site, which the company claims is the largest and most advanced of its kind in the Middle East, in Lod, Israel, January 11, 2022. (credit: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun)

Bitton enthusiastically expressed that the company is committed to continue serving its Israeli customers:

"DHL Express handles about 50% of the import logistics in Israel, and we will continue to work diligently and with a sense of responsibility to further support the global expansion of Israeli businesses into the global market," he said.

"We thank global management for greenlighting this one-of-a-kind project in the entire Middle East region, and just as much as we are excited about the increased operational capacity, we are equally as proud in our holistic approach that connects service, results and people."