Consuming is easier than ever. All it takes is for an e-commerce customer to click on a product and within a few days – or even a few hours – he or she will have it in his or her hands. But what lies behind it is much more complex. That click automatically activates the arteries of an almost invisible underworld that moves at a dizzying pace so that the purchase reaches its destination in record time.
Since the fateful 2020, the turning point for online sales, this machinery has a new ally in Spain. Huboo Technologies Spain landed in Madrid in the middle of the pandemic, turning the crisis into an opportunity and making it easier for many companies, especially small and medium-sized ones, to sell their products even when their doors were closed to the public.
Huboo is a British company dedicated to fullfilment, a relatively recent concept in Spain. “It’s as simple as letting a specialist company take full responsibility for the logistics of your e-commerce: storage, selection, preparation, packaging and shipping of your orders,” Alejandro Vázquez, Partnerships Manager at Huboo Spain, explained to Invest In Madrid.
The Spanish division of Huboo, originally a British company, perfectly represents the current concept of entrepreneurship that Madrid Region is betting on. Enthusiastic young people, convinced of the virtues of their business and aware of the fundamental role that their activity plays for many small and medium-sized companies. “Logistics is a complex process, it consumes a lot of time and resources, it is not very scalable if you take care of it yourself and, furthermore, it is a critical factor in the Customer Experience”, continues Vázquez. “It’s about outsourcing your logistics without taking on risks or initial investment. In the middle of the pandemic, with the lock on the shops, Huboo was also able to help market the most sought-after health products during those months: masks, APIS, tests, etc. The result could not have been more promising: 600% growth during the covid months.
Spain and Madrid, a great opportunity
Spain is proving to be a strategic enclave for Huboo in its internationalisation process. In our country, the e-commerce sector is growing at an annual rate of 6% compared to an average fall of 3% at international level, according to Salesforce data for the first quarter of 2022. Having a presence in Spain gives us access to a huge market,” Vázquez continues. Logistically, it gives us connections to key markets such as Portugal and France. And it is also a gateway to the Latin American market”.
Arguments to which is added a reason that defines the Spanish social architecture very well. “Spain has an additional peculiarity: it has one of the highest concentrations of population in cities in the European Union, which also helps to boost the development of eCommerce. In other words, more consumers can be reached by travelling fewer kilometres. And thanks to a radial system of transport and connectivity that starts from the geographical epicentre of the peninsula: Madrid Region.
The final decision to choose Madrid “was not difficult”, continues the young entrepreneur Vázquez. “Madrid is in the centre of Spain, our logistics centre is very close to the Adolfo Suárez Madrid Barajas International Airport, we also have direct access to the A2, we are close to the Dry Port (with connections to the ports of Algeciras, Valencia, Bilbao and Barcelona) and in the heart of the Corredor del Henares. On the other hand, Madrid is already consolidated as a business centre and a focus of attraction for “seed capital” and foreign investment, which has also been a major factor in the decision”.
In addition to the competitive advantages offered by the region, the work of Invest In Madrid, which has accompanied him both during this process and during his establishment in the region, was a determining factor in his decision. “We contacted Invest in Madrid as a result of the market research we carried out when we were considering setting up in Spain. Invest in Madrid provided us with information for the market research we carried out, which helped us to make a decision”.
Now, Invest In Madrid channels its work from the Aftercare department, advising and helping them to expand their business. Huboo works exclusively with its own resources, both in terms of infrastructure – it has its own warehouse where each e-Commerce has a Hub Manager who manages its stock and orders – and human factors. This forces it to adapt to each particularity of the new markets: software, shipments, legislation, regulations, business culture, etc.
And it allows this expansion to take place thanks to the talent, innovation and local resources of the new destination. In short, the impact of its business also benefits the business fabric of the region. Huboo foresees an increase of more than 40% in hiring by the end of 2022, reaching 62 employees. And they promise to be highly qualified jobs. Huboo’s young representative in Spain explains: “We have a strong focus on technology; we have our own software, which we integrate free of charge with the customer’s marketplace or sales platform. We will continue to work on the continuous improvement of this solution, as well as on the implementation of other technological innovations such as partnerships with bots, image recognition or the use of automated mobile robots”.
Fulfilment: a concept that is here to stay. Welcome to the logistics revolution.