Oct. 31 2008 10:57 AM

UPS is actively trying to win DHL US express customers at the same time as negotiating a deal to take over North American uplift for DHL. 

The Atlanta-based company has launched a special “Welcome Center for DHL Customers” website for US shippers called “Switch Now”, with a direct link from its US homepage. The website highlights DHL’s restructuring, compares the US services of the two companies and actively encourages DHL customers to switch business to UPS. 

“We realize that your business may be affected by recent changes in DHL's US operations,” the Switch Now welcome message says. “Published reports say the company has significantly reduced its US workforce and network capacity… Take a look and see what Brown can do for you to keep your business moving.” 

In a series of charts comparing DHL and UPS products, UPS highlights a number of gaps in the domestic and international product portfolio of DHL Express USA, including only one international express service (DHL Worldwide Priority Express) and no international deferred product. 

The website offers US companies options to open a new UPS account, find shipping solutions and identify appropriate technology tools. Existing UPS customers are told that UPS is “ready for more”. 

The website, which was launched in mid-October, follows public comments by UPS and DHL executives in recent weeks and months that they would continue to compete vigorously in the marketplace despite their planned cooperation over North American airlift. 

Deutsche Post World Net is due to make detailed statements on November 10 about the progress of the DHL US express restructuring, the status of negotiations with UPS over the airlift deal, and its planned next steps. UPS CEO Scott Davis recently said the air agreement might change in “size and scope” from the original plan for a 10-year, $10 billion deal. DHL and UPS have said they aim to seal an airlift deal by the end of the year to enter force in 2009.