March 6, 2014, 12:40 PM

Bon-Ton consolidates web fulfillment with a new distribution center in Ohio

The regional department store operator will open a 743,000-square-foot facility in spring 2015.

Lead Photo

Brendan Hoffman

The Bon-Ton Stores Inc. is consolidating e-commerce fulfillment services, currently done at four distribution centers scattered across the Midwest, under one roof in Ohio. The regional department store chain operator announced this week it is leasing a 743,000-square-foot e-commerce fulfillment facility in West Jefferson to support growing web sales. Bon-Ton says the facility will open in spring 2015 and employ about 139 full-time workers, plus seasonal staff.

Bon-Ton has 270 stores in 25 states doing business under several retail brand names, including Bergner’s, Carson’s, Boston Store and Younkers. The retailer generated $21.48 million in sales online in 2012, according to Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide estimates, up 17.9% from $18.22 million in 2011. Brendan Hoffman, Bon-Ton president and chief executive officer, said in November e-commerce is on track to account for about 5% of total Bon-Ton sales.

“In response to the rapid growth in our e-commerce business, we are taking this step to ensure extraordinary service to our customers,” Hoffman says, noting the facility will let the retailer expand shipping capacity and be more efficient. Hoffman joined Bon-Ton in 2012 from an e-commerce background. He was previously CEO of Neiman Marcus Direct, the online and catalog division of Neiman Marcus Group LTD LLC and No. 39 in the Top 500.

The four distribution centers that currently ship online orders to Bon-Ton’s customers will remain open and continue to supply stores. They are in Dayton, OH, Rockford, IL, Naperville, IL, and Whitehall, PA.

Read more about how Bon-Ton is using the web and e-commerce to improve services for consumers shopping in its stores in the cover story of this month’s Internet Retailer magazine.

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