The BMW Group broke ground today at the future site of a new Vehicle Distribution Center at the Port of Galveston. BMW is expanding its vehicle distribution network to southeastern Texas to better serve the 45 BMW and MINI dealers within four states (Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas) that make up a part of the Southern Region. Craig Westbrook, Vice President – Aftersales, BMW of North America, Jim Goldsmith, Vehicle Processing and Distribution Department Head, BMW of North America, John Felitto, President of Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics Vehicle Services Americas and Benjamin Holland, Chairperson, Port of Galveston were on hand to help break ground for the new facility.
“Rapid delivery to our customers and dealers is a key element to exceptional customer service,” said Craig Westbrook, Aftersales VP of BMW North America. “Once fully operational, the new Port of Galveston Vehicle Distribution Center will enable us to receive, prepare and deliver vehicles to the Southern Region even more quickly than before.”
The facility will be owned and operated by WWL Vehicle Services Americas under BMW Group on-site management. WWL Vehicle Service Americas is a leading global provider of auto processing and outbound vehicle logistics services.
“WWL Vehicle Services Americas is proud to build a state-of-the-art vehicle distribution center to provide the highest quality processing and support the BMW Group’s distribution in the Gulf region,” said John Felitto, President & CEO of WWL Vehicle Services Americas.
“This project helps the Port achieve its mission of being the economic engine for the City of Galveston and the local region. With this new vehicle processing center we are confident that the activity level of the port will continue to increase, including the creation of new livable wage jobs. We are pleased that our successful efforts to maintain existing world-class tenants and to attract additional ones continues,” said Michael J. Mierzwa, Port Director, Port of Galveston.
Once the Galveston Vehicle Distribution Center is fully operational in 2016, the BMW Group plans to import and process approximately 32,500 vehicles annually with a workforce of 40 BMW Group and WWL Vehicle Services Americas employees. The facility will include over 44,000 square feet of processing space in two buildings on approximately 20 acres of land. Vehicle inspection, repairs (mechanical and Paint and Body), accessory installation, vehicle programming and vehicle maintenance and storage will be performed there.
The facility will be ready to receive its first shipment of cars for processing in early 2016.