European outdoor specialist retailer adds automation

Company once scrambling to keep up lets the DC do the work by itself.

By ·

European outdoor specialist retailer Jack Wolfskin had grown by more than 20% every year, and the company’s warehousing and logistics systems were bursting at the seams. When the company built a new facility, it deployed an automated distribution center with innovative storage and order picking systems.

The new logistics center, located near Hamburg, Germany, completely relies on direct carton handling—pallets, trays, or other additional load carriers are not needed. The automatic carton warehouse stores the delivered cartons directly in the triple-depth storage in a 12-aisle warehouse with 210,000 storage locations. The goods are conveyed to the order picking zones, where the system fully directs the order picking process. Items can be moved and stored in multiple locations to speed up order fulfillment.

From the order-picking process, orders can be redirected to manual laborers for post-processing, such as labeling, repacking, special documenting and possibly ironing or other preparations according to customer requirements. Displays inform the workers what carton needs what special attention, and finished cartons are transferred back onto the conveyor.

Finally, all cartons are covered with a lid, automatically strapped, and labeled for shipping.

The new automated distribution center also led to extensive changes in the organization and to a complete replacement of the company’s IT system. The solutions provider ensured that all the systems worked well together. According to Christian Brandt, Jack Wolfskin’s CFO and head of logistics, the change was a quantum leap.

“Our provider managed to guide us out of the Stone Age into the modern era of logistics,” says Brandt, who adds the best part of the project was that none of his customers noticed. “Although, to be honest, I wasn’t really expecting that.”

TGW
231-798-4547
http://www.tgw-group.com


More Storage coverage.

More from Modern’s 2012 Casebook


About the Author

Josh Bond, Senior Editor
Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.

Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
Download: Material Handling Technology Survey Results
Readers are buying and replacing warehousing and distribution center software, but not before they do their own homework.
Download Today!
From the July 2017 Modern Materials Handling Issue
Shuttle and case dispensing technologies help Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits keep up with demand in one of the most competitive markets in the country.
Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits: Designed to Last
Automation: What’s at the heart of your system?
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Warehouse Execution Systems (WES): The Pathway to Same-Day Fulfillment
This webinar explores the processes and technologies enabling same-day, same-hour order fulfillment using intelligent supply chain software.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits: Designed to Last
On Long Island, the country’s premier distributor of wine and spirits turned to shuttle and case...
GE Healthcare System Report: Lean repairs
Self-driving mobile robots improve cycle times and reduce floor space at GE Healthcare’s new...

Materials Handling Innovation (and why it matters)
Every company considers itself an innovator. It’s time to include materials handling leaders in...
Thrive Market’s Startup Distribution Network
How does a fastgrowing, e-commerce startup company build out order fulfillment capabilities? Thrive...