London, U.K. --- (METERING.COM) --- June 22, 2010 - British Gas has awarded a £17 million contract over five years to logistics company DHL Supply Chain to implement a national supply chain solution focused on optimizing the financial and environmental efficiency of its U.K. smart meter rollout.

The solution will facilitate the installation and maintenance by British Gas of over 16 million smart meters for its 12 million customers.

DHL will deliver a national supply chain using a regional network to manage meter assets including smart meters, in-house displays and associated ancillary items from British Gas’ national warehouse to DHL’s national distribution network of collection points.

The regional model will provide the flexibility required to manage the short and long term volume fluctuations expected while utilizing local collection points that will minimize the downtime of the team installing the meters and provide a secure means of collecting and depositing materials.

Additionally, DHL’s network will manage returned meters from collection points to the relevant asset owners, while DHL will work closely with British Gas to further minimize the environmental impact of the rollout through the management of waste materials and the use of teardrop trailers.

DHL will fully integrate with current British Gas systems to provide real time track and traceability of metering assets at serial level number, at all points throughout the supply chain. The end result is a supply chain that ensures British Gas is able to deliver a positive customer experience throughout the rollout period.

“The flexible regional solution implemented by DHL will enable us to effectively manage the volumes expected across the rollout period while maintaining exceptional service quality,” commented Rob Morton, supply chain director at British Gas. “We are confident that the robust and cost effective solution proposed by DHL will help kick-start our smart meter rollout.”

“DHL already operates smart metering operations across Europe and has the experience and capability to provide British Gas with a reliable solution for this complex and large scale rollout in the UK,” added Tim Slater, managing director – industrial of DHL Supply Chain UK&I. “Our partnership with British Gas will support mutual growth objectives in the market while facilitating the creation of new jobs.”