Eziba Rebounding from Warehouse Collapse

Apr 01, 2003 10:30 PM  By

The blizzard that attacked the East Coast on Presidents’ Day weekend caused the roof of fulfillment services provider ClientLogic’s warehouse in Dover, DE, to collapse on Feb. 17. The weight of more than two feet of snow on the flat-roof building resulted in extensive damage that prevented some of the company’s clients, such as North Adams, MA-based global gifts cataloger Eziba, from fulfilling orders for more than a week.

Eziba is working under the assumption that all of its merchandise was lost in the collapse and is collecting inbound shipments at a nearby UPS hub and at a temporary location provided by ClientLogic, says Dean Frost, the cataloger’s vice president of operations. Eziba explained the situation to customers as they called to place orders and contacted others whose orders were affected, says president Bill Miller. The cataloger, which also posted a message on its Website explaining the problem, redirected some customers to its two retail locations, in New York and Boston; Frost says it had a 60% fill rate on existing orders from those stores.

During the crisis, ClientLogic placed updates on its Website for updates and called customers daily, says its marketing and communications director, Brian Burkhardt. The company certainly had its hands full: The affected 400′ × 200′ area in the warehouse suffered a broken gas and water main, rendering the building structurally unsound, Burkhardt says. Meanwhile, warmer temperatures and substantial rainfall further damaged the contents inside the warehouse. At press time, all inbound orders were being rerouted to ClientLogic’s Buffalo, NY, fulfillment center or to secure trailers in Dover. The company is also investigating new warehouse spaces in Dover, Burkhardt says.