The central location in both Germany and Europe plus a highly efficient infrastructure make the state a top location for logistics. All of Europe‘s major economic centers can be reached from Thuringia within a very short time. Thanks also to a highly skilled and qualified workforce, logistics firms in Thuringia achieve excellent cut-off times and can reliably serve industry with just-in-time or just in sequence delivery.
Many leading logistics companies such as DHL, DB Schenker, Kühne + Nagel, BLG LOGISTICS, Dachser and Fiege have invested in Thuringia in recent years. The Free State is also an extremely popular location for e-commerce businesses, as is demonstrated by investments from Zalando, redcoon or KNV Zeitfracht.
The central location combined with the most modern transportation infrastructure make Thuringia a business location where short distances are guaranteed.
Logistics and trading companies generally prefer the fast connections to the markets of Europe by road, rail or air. Thanks to its excellent traffic and transport infrastructure, Thuringia is able to guarantee time-saving goods handling.
Modern roads and autobahns
In recent years, companies such as BLG LOGISTICS, Rhenus or Eurogate have opened new distribution centers in Thuringia, especially alongside the five autobahns. This is just one indicator of how important the state has become as a hub of transport between Eastern and Western Europe.
Erfurt-Weimar Airport serves as a hub for the international airfreight business. TNT Express handles shipments for onward transport by air or truck from or to the whole of Germany at its self-owned air and road hub. Since May 2008, TNT Express has had its own customs clearance facility in Erfurt. DB Schenker offers daily airfreight connections to key destinations worldwide.
Densest rail network
One of Europe‘s most important railway connections for passenger and freight traffic - the Paris – Frankfurt am Main – Berlin – Warsaw – Moscow route - runs through Thuringia. Relative to its size and population, Thuringia has the densest rail network in Europe, with around 1,550 kilometres of track currently in Service.
Erfurt – The high speed train hub (ICE)
Erfurt Central Station serves as a hub for ICE high speed trains in all directions. Berlin and Dresden can be reached in less than 2 hours, Frankfurt in 2 hours and 10 minutes. The travel time to Munich has been cut to 2 hours and 15 minutes. Express lines with new schedules will also connect the city regions with all parts of the state, benefiting the whole of Thuringia.
State-of-the-art logistics centers
Freight Hub Erfurt (GVZ)
Covering an area of approx. 340 hectares,the Freight Hub Erfurt (GVZ) is one of Germany’s biggest and most up-to-date freight hubs. Located just outside Erfurt, it is directly connected to the A4 and A71 autobahns. A railway terminal ensures rapid goods handling. At present, over 60 companies have facilities at the GVZ, including the logistics enters of IKEA, MediaMarkt/Saturn and Zalando.
International Logistics Center Erfurt
At the new International Logistics Center Erfurt (ILZ), business enterprises are setting up operations on the 70-hectare site for their Europe-wide freight-handling activities. For example Panasonic‘s logistics operations are managed from here at 60,000 m². And with the wine specialist Mack&Schühle respectively its logistics partner Berger Contract Logistics the longest wine board in Germany has opened up there. Access directly to the A71 autobahn, and the airport and GVZ Thuringia can be reached in 10 minutes.
In Thuringia, there are many highly motivated and highly qualified people working in logistics. Businesses offer traineeships in all relevant vocational skills, while both private and state universities provide courses at degree level in all aspects of logistics.
Selected degree programs
Logistics Network Thuringia
Enterprises working in business, education and research have joined forces to create the Logistics Network Thuringia. The Network pools skills and abilities in marketing, staff training and retention, innovation, cooperation and logistics services. Its goal is to foster the further development of an innovative, future-fit logistics site.
Zeitfracht Medien GmbH
Zeitfracht Medien GmbH dominates the B2B and B2C book logistics market with a wholesale book market share of over 45% and supplies around 7,000 retailers. With over 750,000 titles in its portfolio, the company enables fast, overnight delivery six days a week through its own network. Zeitfracht is also the market leader in the publisher delivery segment with a market share of over 20% and co-operates with well-known publishers.
Germany’s leading provider of integrated supply chain management services operates a 4,500 m² logistics terminal. On its 38,500 m² site at the “Erfurter Kreuz” autobahn junction, Schenker distributes general cargo as well as part and full truckloads to all areas of Europe. With its robust business model, DB Schenker is well equipped to meet the demands of its customers on the increasingly integrating international markets and the growth in goods flows.
Jointly with the investor Goodman, Zalando chose Erfurt as the location for its first own logistics center. After a construction time of only ten months, test operation started in August 2012. With 120,000 square meters of stock space, the center is the biggest goods warehouse for shoes and fashion any-where in Europe.
The furniture retailer XXXLutz from Austria has selected the industrial park Erfurter Kreuz as the location for its new ecommerce center. On the approximately 25 hectare plot a state-of-the-art warehouse as well as office and training facilities are planned. In the final expansion phase, up to 400 new jobs will be created to ensure a quick and reliable delivery of products to its online customers. The geographic location of the company’s new central site is first-rate: at the heart of Germany with very good transport infrastructure and excellent connection to the major logistics partners.
Additional selected companies: