DHL Supply Chain opens new warehouse for IKEA with automated packaging machinery
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DHL Supply Chain has announced the opening a new, highly automated fulfillment centre in the German city of Bergkamen, which will serve its customer, IKEA. The facility has been commissioned to help the furniture retailer with its fast-growing ecommerce business in Germany.
The site in Bergkamen, which can serve multiple customers, boasts 40,000 square meters of warehouse space and is part of the neighboring DHL Supply Chain Unna Campus, which is under 10 kilometers away.
In a statement, DHL said that 20,000 square meters of warehouse space will be available for IKEA alone. 350 employees will work on-site six days a week in three shifts.
The fulfillment centre will be fully operational at the end of this month, at which point an average of 8,000 stock keeping units (SKUs = identical products with the same stock number) will be processed on-site. At full capacity, DHL says the site is capable of processing 11,000 SKUs.
The facility also includes a number of machines to accelerate and automate processes. Chief among them are the automated packaging machines available on-site for sensitive goods that require special packaging.
Commenting on the opening of the facility, Rainer Haag, Chief Executive Officer DHL Supply Chain Germany & Alps, said:
“For DHL Supply Chain, the implementation represents another important building block in our drive to grow e-commerce, one of our strategic growth sectors, as well as the continuation of our commercial automation and digitization strategy for continuous improvement in operations. Thanks to the Locus robots, the distances our warehouse staff need to walk have been radically reduced and picking effectiveness significantly increased. Interacting with employees on site, the system reduces individual order process times, optimizes employee workflows and improves operational efficiency.”
Kai Fuhlrott, Country Customer Fulfilment Manager for IKEA Deutschland, added:
“The consumer sector around the world is undergoing change at the moment. Part of this change is the ever-increasing importance of online retail. Our focus is set on the changing needs of our customers. The commissioning of the Bergkamen fulfillment center for IKEA Germany allows us to take another step in providing an outstanding shopping experience for our customers, whenever and wherever, online or in our stores. We are delighted to have found a new, competent partner in DHL Supply Chain, who has shown us new ways forward and has been able to set up a highly complex, customized fulfillment solution for us at the Bergkamen site in just a short space of time.
Finally, Bernd Schäfer, the mayor of Bergkamen, also commented as follows:
“Having two leading companies in their respective industries partner here on-site offers a degree of security for the city of Bergkamen as well as for employees. This is an important factor given the current pace of change. For Bergkamen, the A2 Logistics Park remains the right decision at the right time. I am convinced that the site offers the potential and opportunities to continue to profit from the growth of logistics – the largest business sector in Germany after automotive and trade. Logistics is a strong industry with a powerful focus on growth and the future. It is therefore a welcome partner for Bergkamen.”