Swisslog, a leading provider of warehouse automation and software, has announced that Northern Tool + Equipment will install a Swisslog Automation Solution within its Fort Mill, SC facility to meet its omni-channel distribution needs. Designed by Swisslog experts, the solution features the AutoStore system optimized by Swisslog’s SynQ software. The solution is expected to be operational by October 2023.
The automation solution from Swisslog is part of Northern Tool + Equipment’s emphasis on innovation and deploying state-of-the-art technology to position the company for continued growth and serve both its online customers and retail locations. The company currently has over 130 stores across the U.S. and plans to open 80 additional locations over the next four years. It sees warehouse automation technology playing a vital role in this growth, Swisslog noted.
The existing Fort Mill facility supports both online ordering and Northern Tool + Equipment retail locations. The automation solution, which contains 23,175 bins and 62 robots, is designed to help bolster the company’s omni-channel fulfillment capabilities and ensure its customers receive products when and where they want them in today’s changing marketplace. Swisslog automation experts worked with the customer to integrate the system into the existing facility and operations without needing any additional construction work.
“Northern Tool + Equipment is committed to continued growth. Through strategic planning and thoughtful attention to what our customers need most from us, we’ve built a detailed roadmap for the future. One that includes continued innovation in manufacturing our products and upgrades at the retail level to meet the needs of our customers,” said Shaun Bunch, Northern Tool + Equipment senior vice president of supply chain operations. “A big step in this direction is the expertise and innovative automation technology that Swisslog is bringing to our supply chain.”
The automation solution to be deployed in the facility operates on synchronized intelligence from Swisslog’s SynQ software, which provides warehouse management, material flow and automation control system functionality in a single, modular platform. It can integrate seamlessly with existing warehouse management systems (WMS) to orchestrate the material flow and ensure the different components communicate and work together to boost efficiency and productivity and adapt to changing market requirements, Swisslog added.
“We are excited to partner with Northern Tool + Equipment to help the company meet consumer expectations for quick, easy and reliable access to quality tools and products,” said Sean Wallingford, president and CEO of Swisslog Americas. “Our SynQ AutoStore module has been specifically designed to manage the system and play a key role in optimizing efficiency and performance by balancing loads across pick stations to maximize picks per station and overall system throughput.”
Swisslog currently has over 370 AutoStore projects in over 26 countries, featuring over nine million storage bins and using over 13,000 robots. The Swisslog e-book, “Making AutoStore Work For You,” offers insights and best practices from a variety of these projects.