E-commerce Company Quadruples Capacity with Mobile Sortation Robots

E-COMMERCE COMPANY QUADRUPLES CAPACITY WITH MOBILE SORTATION ROBOTS

Robot fleet continuously recalculates order fulfillment priorities and inventory movement patterns.

From Modern Materials Handling
By Josh Bond, Senior Editor
August 10, 2020

Rex Brown is a fast-growing, e-commerce expert in sourcing, branding and distribution. The company currently processes 2.5 million orders per year for customers ranging from major household name brand Unilever to small and medium-sized enterprise brands.

After deploying a fleet of modular sortation robots, the company will have the capacity to process more than 10 million orders each year.

Rex Brown operates across Europe, the Middle East and Africa and is expanding across the Asia Pacific region, with a growing capacity of 30,000 daily shipments. The company sought to manage inventory complexity and scale sorting capacity to 20,000 parcels per shift—with plans to double this volume over the next few years.

The new mobile robots (GreyOrange) leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning to optimize fulfillment operations, working in fleets to efficiently and fluidly move parcels from receiving through dispatch. This avoids sortation bottlenecks that can occur with rigid systems, especially during periods of peak volume.

Integrated intelligence software serves as a learning layer in the robots, enabling them to communicate with each other and the central system to continuously recalculate order fulfillment priorities and inventory movement patterns.

“We chose this solution because we’re seeing an increase in growth volumes from customers, and we have our own ambitious goals for our company, so we need a partner that can support us to grow the business without any constraints,” says Ash Kandhari, managing director at Rex Brown. “It easily integrates with our operations and seamlessly connects with our existing packaging machines through auto induction.”

Kandhari highlighted the system’s ability to adapt to changes in real time, both within the distribution center and externally as order patterns and fulfillment expectations fluctuate. The system is also expected to help the company meet its own ambitious sustainability targets.

“The inherent flexibility in the system enables us to start as per the current needs and allows for scale-up as the business grows,” Kandhari says, “thereby reducing the risk of large capital expenditure in the initial stages.”

Read full article on Modern Materials Handling.

Ready for flexible fulfillment that adapts in real-time? Let’s chat.

GreyOrange Ranger™ GTP Receives First-Ever Certification for AMP Robots in Commercial and Industrial Environments

GreyOrange RangerGTP Receives First-Ever Certification for AMP Robots in Commercial and Industrial Environments

Distinguished certification to UL 3100, Second Edition highlights GreyOrange’s industry-leading safety leadership

 

ATLANTA (July 29, 2020)GreyOrange, a global software and mobile robotics provider that leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning to optimize fulfillment operations, today announced that one of its autonomous mobile robots, Ranger GTP, is the first Automated Mobile Platforms (AMP) robot of its kind to be UL Certified to UL 3100, Second Edition for use in commercial and industrial environments.

Ranger GTP is a goods-to-person autonomous mobile robot that can transport inventory from 220 to 3,500 pounds to workers for picking and packing, while working in collaborative performance with other robots and the human workforce.

“This highly sought-after certification demonstrates GreyOrange’s leadership in setting the bar for safety of automated fulfillment in warehouse environment,” said Akash Gupta, Chief Technology Officer, GreyOrange. “We felt it was important to develop a truly safer product that would inspire trust and assure our customers and partners that they have made the right decision by implementing a GreyOrange solution.”

Ranger series robots, including Ranger GTP, are built together with GreyMatter AI software to form the GreyOrange Fulfillment Operating System. GreyOrange Ranger robots continuously communicate with each other and GreyMatter to recalculate and orchestrate fulfillment priorities and inventory movement patterns based on real-time factors. Ranger GTP is certified against fire, electrical and other hazards, helping to make it safe for both humans and robots to work with.

“We are pleased to see GreyOrange proactively achieve UL Certification for Ranger GTP AMP to UL 3100, Second Edition,” said Jeff Smidt, vice president and general manager of energy and power technologies at UL.  “This represents a milestone in industry by heading down a safer path for automated mobile platforms.”

UL Certified products go through rigorous testing, inspection and auditing in the industrial field, where risk is higher than most and safety is the utmost important application.  The certification process included a step-by-step review of all the components in Ranger GTP from a fire and shock perspective to meet the safety requirements of UL 3100, Second Edition, Outline of Investigation for Automated Mobile Platforms (AMPs).

About GreyOrange
GreyOrange is a global company that modernizes order fulfillment through Artificial Intelligence-driven software and mobile robots built together so they cooperate in deciding on and executing warehouse activities that maximize payoffs and minimize tradeoffs to create the highest yield.  The company’s next era Fulfillment Operating System driven by always-solving GreyMatter software considers predictive and real-time data regarding orders, promises, inventory, shipping windows, and resources to orchestrate how workers and robots work as a team to fulfill the right orders at the right time. GreyOrange experts help organizations master fulfillment in the Age of Immediacy so they keep promises, capture more revenue, and improve work experiences for warehouse employees. GreyOrange has core operations in the United States, Singapore, Germany, Japan and India. www.GreyOrange.com

Mobile robots feed warehouse demand for adaptability

MOBILE ROBOTS FEED WAREHOUSE DEMAND FOR ADAPTABILITY

”The ability to flex up and flex down depending on what is happening in the real world is going to be the wave of the future”

From FreightWaves
By Linda Baker
July 17, 2020

The pandemic and seemingly unstoppable e-commerce surge is accelerating robotic takeover of the warehouse space, as brands seize on flexible automated solutions to address a variety of marketplace challenges.

“You can’t meet the demands of modern commerce with systems that were built for a previous era,” said Terrie O’Hanlon, chief marketing officer for  GreyOrange, a software and mobile robotics company that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to make warehouse operations more efficient.

Adaptability in particular has become an essential tool as operators must respond quickly to customer demand that is at once surging and fluctuating wildly, O’Hanlon said.

GreyOrange provides fleets of autonomous modular sorting robots (available in six “form factors”) that move parcels from receiving through dispatch. The company’s key differentiator, according to O’Hanlon, is an AI-driven fulfillment operating system that allows the devices to communicate with one another and adapt to changes in real time, as order patterns and fulfillment expectations change.

“It’s pricey to be able to deliver on that desire for immediacy for the consumer,” said O’Hanlon. Compared to traditional fixed automation systems, mobile robots allow companies to have a high degree of automation that is also cost effective, she said.

The COVID-19 factor

Warehouse robotics investment surged 57% in 2020, according to a recent Pitchbook report, as brands jump on solutions designed to reduce labor costs and improve e-commerce delivery times.

The pandemic is only accelerating development of new robotics technologies, with maintenance and cleaning emerging as a prime target area for mobile automation.

Nimble operations 

From a logistics perspective, the pandemic and macroeconomic climate are accelerating interest in flexible warehouse assets, said Karl Siebrecht, CEO of aptly named Flexe, a Seattle-based on-demand warehousing company. “What we’re seeing is a two-front war that retailers are trying to keep up with,” he explained. E-commerce is surging, so retailers worry they don’t have enough warehouses. But if they have brick-and-mortar operations, total business may be down.

“In a recession, the last thing you may want to do is make capital investments,” Siebrecht said. Flexe’s business model and value proposition is about winning the two-front war: adding new warehouse locations and capacity very quickly with no fixed costs.

That framework informs the GreyOrange business model. Companies today are putting smaller amounts of inventory in smaller warehouses closer to consumers, O’Hanlon noted, while also looking to make all inventory, e-commerce and brick and mortar, visible and accessible to the system. As these micro-fulfillment and omni-channel practices reshape e-commerce, expensive, fixed automation investments become less attractive.

Instead, scalable mobile robots can help companies adapt to changing fulfillment dynamics without breaking the bank.

“With COVID, everything changed overnight,” O’Hanlon said. “The ability to flex up and flex down depending on what is really happening in the real world is going to be the wave of the future.”

Mobile robotic solutions come with other advantages —  namely, they help smaller e-commerce operators compete with the Amazon juggernaut, O’Hanlon observed. “People want to do business with local providers if they can get the same level of convenience and service,” she said.

Read the full article at FreightWaves.

Ready for flexible fulfillment that adapts in real-time? Let’s chat.

Using Technology to Manage Expectations in an Omnichannel World, Part 1

USING TECHNOLOGY TO MANAGE EXPECTATIONS IN AN OMNICHANNEL WORLD, PART 1

By Jeff Cashman

From Total Retail
July 14, 2020
By Jeff Cashman

The retail supply chain has experienced some dramatic evolutions over the last 10 years to 15 years. What started out as a straightforward process for getting goods from a warehouse or a distribution center (DC) and out onto the retail floor has become a central focus for companies managing a complex supply chain, including e-commerce, omnichannel, and brick-and-mortar.

No longer focused solely on storing and shipping pallets of goods, the true omnichannel warehouse must have the capabilities to intelligently optimize fulfillment and increase store efficiency by packing replenishment orders according to individual store layouts and preferences, as well as orchestrating the fulfillment and delivery of single orders to individual customers’ doorsteps. Covering this spread and keeping these order promises can be difficult, and presents high hurdles for retailers that rely on a hodgepodge of manual systems, spreadsheets and older technology solutions to run their supply chains. Concurrently, the lines between offline and online retail sales continue to blur, with offline players improving their online presences (e.g., Walmart’s acquisition of Jet.com) and vice versa (Amazon.com’s purchase of Whole Foods). This, coupled with the sheer uncertainty over what channel a customer will eventually adopt, stokes the need for a more modern fulfillment operating system.

The fast-changing world situation has given retailers an opportunity to redefine the supply chain and step up capabilities to succeed in this new era. The opportunity is impossible to ignore.

Read the full article at Total Retail.

Robotics Finds Its Place in Fulfillment

ROBOTICS FINDS ITS PLACE IN FULFILLMENT

From Bdaily News
By Roberto Michel
Jul 09, 2020

Robotics has gained rapid traction in the last few years of economic growth and low unemployment, as companies began implementing as a means of increasing productivity and coping with the labor crunch. Now the COVID-19 disruption has changed the unemployment picture, but vendors still see a pressing need for innovation.

Extraordinary times—and a need for proven measures—may be what propels robotics to the next level in warehouse and distribution center (DC) operations.

Not that robotics has been slow to catch on in warehousing. According to analyst firm ABI Research, the global mobile robotics market will reach $23 billion this year. In a 2020 survey by Peerless Research as part of our annual “Industry Outlook” study, 9% surveyed told us they were already using robotics, and 19% were considering them.

But can robotics for intralogistics keep growing quickly, given the disruption from the COVID-19 pandemic? Unemployment has skyrocketed. Some manufacturers temporarily had to shut down sites, and many companies have tightened their budgets, at least in the short term.

At the same time, e-commerce has spiked, especially in sectors like grocery. And while it may be too early to tally the impacts of the pandemic on robotics, in the long term, the technology’s ability to increase productivity with minimal added labor bodes well for the technology, says Rian Whitton, a senior analyst at ABI.

“From what we’re seeing, there has been a huge increase in demand for e-commerce during the pandemic,” says Whitton.”

“And the greater the percentage of retail that shifts to online, the more heavily automated these warehouses and other facilities involved with fulfillment will need to become, which should accelerate the market for mobile robotics.”

Robotics spans autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) that transport goods or assist workers with picking, as well as fixed robotic arms that can identify and pick goods. Some workflows may combine the two, with AMRs transporting bins to robotic arms. Some vendors, such as IAM Robotics, offer “mobile manipulation” robots that can pick items.

In short, there are multiple types of robotics, and they often work in combination with people, or with fixed forms of automation like conveyors. This range of solution types is the first thing potential users need to realize about warehouse robotics.

Robotics vendors say there are other ways that robotics is evolving for intralogistics, including new workflows, better exception handling, and deeper leveraging of artificial intelligence (AI). What’s more, robotics aligns with the times in that they can help keep human co-workers safe, while keeping orders flowing to customers.

Right for the times

During the last couple of years, when unemployment was at historic lows, an often-cited driver for robotics was how it could make the labor you could find more effective by doing away with much of the non-value-added time spent walking or pushing carts in large DCs.

While for the recently unemployed, warehousing can provide much needed work, since due to health concerns, many companies will likely continue to struggle to find enough people without increased automation, say some vendors.

“From a business perspective, the big challenges are that we’re running out of people, we’ve been running out of space, and we’ve been running out of time,” says Jeff Cashman, COO with AMR vendor GreyOrange.

“Even before COVID-19, it was difficult to hire and retain enough associates,” adds Cashman. “Now, because of health risk concerns, it’s still difficult to find enough people, and on top of that, there’s the need to practice social distancing, and time pressures operations face haven’t gotten any easier. Those three problems—running out of people, running out of space, and running out of time—can be seen as underlying drivers for robotics. It’s important, however, that the robots are integrated with a software that is real-time and flexible, to solve those problems.”

Software as differentiator

Vendors generally agree that the key to robotics effectiveness is the software smarts that leverages technologies like AI and machine learning so that the system constantly learns from factors like order mix, labor resources and material flow patterns.

The software platform for most robotics solutions also employs AI to constantly learn from operations and dynamically adapt to tasks and routes as the work unfolds. “The most important part of a solution is the software, which is AI-based software that is real-time in nature,” says Cashman. Robotics software, he adds, should be able to adjust tasks on the fly, based on factors like what’s currently coming into the order pool, where each robot is, and the current performance level of the workers.

“The software is really integrated into the robots so that when the system is thinking about orders or inventory or the particular people that are picking, or the available robots, it’s weighing these factors all at once,” says Cashman. “And it’s that ability to orchestrate all of these components in real time…that’s the difference with the robotics of today versus a generation ago.”

Read the full article at Modern Materials Handling.

Ready for flexible fulfillment that adapts in real-time? Let’s chat.

Will the pandemic accelerate automation in supply chains? Part 3: Micro machines and the move to micro-fulfilment centres

WILL THE PANDEMIC ACCELERATE AUTOMATION IN SUPPLY CHAINS?

Part 3: Micro machines and the move to micro-fulfilment centres

From Reuters Events
By Alex Hadwick
Jul 08, 2020

Meeting e-commerce demand without crippling costs is a huge challenge for logistics but a fundamental shift in how we build, position and operate fulfilment systems might change all of that. Reuters Events: Supply Chain investigates

It’s no secret that e-commerce has been a challenge for a huge number of brands, a challenge that has grown since the advent of COVID-19. The tension is between competing in a way that matches consumers’ desires whilst maintaining margins, with even brands as huge and powerful as Nikeand Amazon reporting or expecting quarterly losses even as e-commerce operations boom in 2020. This is because consumer’s desires to buy online and send deliveries to their homes have accelerated far beyond forecasts made for three or even five years in the future in the space of just six months

Organisations can’t just keep bulking up operations in a conventional way. There isn’t enough warehouse space near key markets. There aren’t enough available workers who can help when demand peaks. There isn’t the transportation capacity in the last mile. Critically, there isn’t the cash available to keep scaling up our current way of doing things given the expected trajectory of e-commerce.

The only real solution is a radical rethink that puts more automation into fulfilment centres and distributes those fulfilment operations closer to the consumer in smaller spaces than have been attempted before.

Macro change – micro-fulfilment

Put simply, the current mode of fulfilment is unsustainable for many. The costs of delivering goods to consumers were already burdensome for a host of retailers in 2019. Skip forward to 2020 and we are looking at a whole different ballpark for those expenses, particularly in the last mile.

The massive and sudden demand for goods to be delivered direct to consumer’s homes, as well as changes in consumption patterns has sent many scrambling for capacity and delivery capability. As we covered in part one of our series on automation, there is also the need to account for worker safety, reducing the capacity for many facilities. On top of this, warehouse space is at a premium right now, adding additional expense. It is therefore an incredibly tough environment where companies are trying to squeeze every ounce of productivity out of their facilities and workers.

“I think there will be smaller distribution centres, close to urban areas, which are really specialized in piece picking”

The second part of this is the potent effect the pandemic has had on the physical shopping space. With many shopping streets around the world already feeling the strain before the arrival of COVID-19, the advent of social distancing and quarantine has broken the back of many retailers. Bankruptcies have been widespread and we are not yet at the end of the tough trading conditions that have brought on those liquidations. Suddenly there is a lot of real estate looking distinctly empty in and around city centres.

We are therefore at a crossroads where moving more fulfilment into smaller facilities closer to consumers is looking increasingly attractive.

“I think there will be smaller distribution centres, close to urban areas, which are really specialized in piece picking,” thinks Markus Schmidt, President of Swisslog Americas.

Fergal Glynn, VP of Marketing at 6 River Systems, agrees seeing “What previously were massive stores” that ringed cities getting turned “into fulfilment centres.

“We do see as well that outside of the big box stores, there could be retail stores that are even smaller, that will become fulfilment centres,” believes Glynn.  

Already Terrie O’Hanlon, CMO at GreyOrange, is seeing that those companies that “Were able to immediately flex into omnichannel and e-commerce fulfilment,” when stores were forced to close “were in better stead than others who had more of a kind of a firewall between those two sets of inventory. I would say that’s in the past.”

Automation at scale but scaled down

Whilst this seems like a neat solution that makes the most of the current crisis, there is a reason why this model is not yet widespread.

The logistical demands of e-commerce has traditionally meant that the only way to account for the costs put back onto the company for picking and delivering items, while still being able to deliver rapidly to the consumer, was to operate at scale.

That scale has largely been massive. Most warehouse specialising in e-commerce fulfilment try to take advantage of economies of scale and usually sit in the hundreds of thousands of feet of floorspace or even millions. Amazon, for example, has largely taken up leases for warehouses of around a million square feet in the recent past.

“The problem is that customers expect great selection with very, very low lead times. The only way to do that is to pre-deploy inventory. The only way to do that is to create automation solutions”

The reasons are economies of scale that result in a chicken and egg scenario where it is very hard to make operations smaller. You need to keep enough inventory on hand to meet consumer demands, which are unpredictable. Therefore, this usually means large volumes.

How do you then sort, pick, pack and distribute this volume? Largely this has been answered through large-scale automation, which is expensive and often requires a large floorspace, with pick and pack stations linked by conveyor belts, further incentivising huge facilities.

“The biggest trick has always been how do you keep the inventory saved, or basically stored as efficiently as possible, but still let people walk through it and pick it themselves?”

Then at the store level, “The biggest trick has always been how do you keep the inventory saved, or basically stored as efficiently as possible, but still let people walk through it and pick it themselves?” asks Lior Elazary, founder and CEO of inVia Robotics, presenting another problematic dimension to putting fulfilment into stores.

“The problem is that customers expect great selection with very, very low lead times. The only way to do that is to pre-deploy inventory. The only way to do that is to create automation solutions,” says Scott Gravelle, co-founder, CEO & CTO of Attabotics.

And it is this new wave of automation that is changing matters, as robotic aid has become smaller and more cost efficient, making a two-tier highly automated system at last functional and attractive.

“We are investigating everything a customer could need for fulfillment, whether it’s in a half million square foot building, all the way down to your local retail store”

Major, centralised warehouses will still in all likelihood be necessary but the most sought-after inventory can now be positioned closer to consumers through micro-fulfilment centres that reduce distance and last mile costs.

“The difference between the traditional sort of omni-channel fulfilment” and the new wave says GreyOrange’s O’Hanlon, “is that you have a bigger operation that’s accommodating multiple form factors of automation to both replenish stores and to answer e-commerce demand,” that then feed into smaller operations closer to the consumer.

This is why 6 River Systems are “Investigating everything a customer could need for fulfilment, whether it’s in a half million square foot building, all the way down to your local retail store,” says Glynn.

Making micro-fulfilment work

The challenge is not just in terms of scale but also in the nitty gritty of functionality of automation in these smaller spaces.

“You’ve got to have automation in those facilities, which is extremely reliable,” points out Schmidt. This, once again, comes down to economies of scale. “If you don’t, you cannot afford to have a lot of technicians running around. It’s too small. If you build a big distribution centre, you have so much throughput and the system is so big, you [can afford] to have technicians on staff, no problem. However, the small fulfilment centres are typically a bolt on to store” and this means there isn’t the room for specialisation to the same degree “because otherwise you need to employ additional expensive people, which defeats the purpose.”

“You’ve got to have automation in those facilities, which is extremely reliable”

So, we have issues around scaling, cost, reliability and size that need to be solved before we can really consider the idea of semi-automated micro-fulfilment centres possible.

One company that thinks it has cracked the code is Attabotics. The start-up from the heart of Canada in Calgary makes the astonishing claim that it can shrink the footprint of a warehouse down to “12% to 15% of its previous footprint.”

“I asked what would be ideal for a robot not for a person. Then I ended up ripping off leafcutter ants”

The secret lies in a rather surprising place: Leafcutter ants.

“I asked what would be ideal for a robot not for a person. Then I ended up ripping off leafcutter ants,” says Gravelle. “I’m really, really glad that they don’t have IP representation, because we’d be in trouble.”

The ideas is to take “Their three-dimensional distribution of goods and create a 3D robotic shuttle,” which would lead to “the highest density storage solution currently being offered, while also providing the additional functionality of sequencing and sortation buffering and conveyance all in one footprint.”

“Items can be picked packed and shipped within about 90 seconds of receiving the order, depending on the backlog”

By going vertical and compressing storage through robots passing through a matrix of bins and eliminating conveyor belts, Attabotics thinks it has cracked the complexity behind micro-fulfilment.

Attabotics’ system first asks their robots to get totes with the various items requested as part of an e-commerce order and “brings those items to a single point…. One system can take those three items, put them in a box in a single touch in a single location.” That box is then “put back into our system and sorted by postal code or carrier or by time and then delivered from there into the truck or it can now be used for micro fulfillment, it can be delivered to a transport vehicle.”

Gravelle claims that a small order of “items can be picked packed and shipped within about 90 seconds of receiving the order, depending on the backlog.”

These micro-fulfilment systems are supported by “a larger warehouse that’s out of market that actually can backfill” items, “So we don’t have to carry all the inventory in a single place.”

The future of shopping

So, it seems we’ve got strong conditions for the segmenting of the delivery structure into major centres feeding smaller distribution nodes closer to the consumer, driven by economic, social and technological changes. Where does this leave the future of retail?

“I think it will probably be like an 80-20% type of thing, where maybe 20% of the store is just showcase, and then 80% might be, fulfilling orders”

Elazary believes it will be a dramatic shift from the once dominant high street. “I think it will probably be like an 80-20% type of thing, where maybe 20% of the store is just showcase, and then 80% might be, fulfilling orders and things like that. Then they’re closer to the customer.”

O’Hanlon also thinks we should reimagine the store to “More almost like a vending machine in a way, where … the person walks … up to the kiosk and they’ve been assigned online to pick up their order, or they can walk directly up to the kiosk themselves and place an order there.”

O’Hanlon gives the example of a shoe store, where “The person can actually observe the robots going to get the shoes, almost as an entertainment factor. The shoes come and you they’re delivered to a locker or a similar means and you can try them on. Then at that kiosk, you can say, ‘Now give me a half size bigger’. So, there’s a whole shopping experience … and the robots are taking any inventory that you don’t take with you and obviously immediately putting it back into stock.”

This will only require “Three or four people in the back of the store who are receiving inventory and putting it into the mobile stock units,” and providing customer service and this store will then also be able to fulfil e-commerce through the same systemic approach.

“The biggest cost with most retailers is the inventory they’re carrying, which is just a buffer”

The next step for refining the micro-fulfilment approach so that it can become this widespread will be the adoption of demand-predicting machine learning. This is critical, as the interplay between inventory held in larger, more remote warehouses needs to be kept in a careful ballet of effective replenishment between there and the micro-fulfilment frontline.  

“The biggest cost with most retailers is the inventory they’re carrying, which is just a buffer,” notes Gravelle. “So, if you can create more transparency in optimisation, you can lessen the size of the buffer, thereby freeing up more of their capital for digital transformation, or for recovery, or for expansion or, ideally, for paying their staff more.”

“Most companies have historically looked at software for this piece, but at the end of the day supply chain is about moving atoms”

According to Gravelle this means “Monitoring all the influencers of purchases, and I don’t just mean Kim Kardashian, but what she does tweet changes demand. I mean, the weather, holiday schedules, major sporting events, the latest rap video, all of these things can influence what gets sold in markets.” Using IoT and big data to correlate the influential factors and eventual sales will mean predictive analytics can place inventory where it is really needed and eventually be expanded to the transportation network as well.

“Most companies have historically looked at software for this piece, but at the end of the day supply chain is about moving atoms. Rethinking how you move atoms but also utilizing all the emerging technology” is going to be the key that unlocks this last mile segment of the distribution puzzle.

Read the full article at Reuters Events.

Ready for flexible fulfillment that adapts in real-time? Let’s chat.

Rex Brown to Roll Out GreyOrange Robots for Retail Fulfillment

REX BROWN TO ROLL OUT GREYORANGE ROBOTS FOR RETAIL FULFILLMENT

From Robotics Tomorrow
July 1, 2020

GreyOrange (www.greyorange.com), a global software and mobile robotics provider that leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning to optimize fulfillment operations for companies worldwide, today announced that Ranger Mobile Sort, the new GreyOrange fleet of modular sortation robots, will bring the latest automation to Rex Brown’s warehouses in a simple and scalable way.

Rex Brown, a fast-growing e-commerce expert in sourcing, branding and distribution, chose Ranger Mobile Sort for its ability to adapt to changes in real time, both within the distribution center and externally as order patterns and fulfillment expectations fluctuate. Additionally, Ranger Mobile Sort will help Rex Brown meet their own ambitious sustainability targets.

Rex Brown currently processes 2.5 million orders per year for customers ranging from major household name brand Unilever to small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) challenger brands, including Emma Bunton’s Kit & Kin baby care company. With the implementation of Ranger Mobile Sort and GreyMatter, Rex Brown will have the capacity to process over 10 million orders each year for its customers.

GreyOrange launched Ranger Mobile Sort in February 2019 at LogiMAT in Stuttgart, Germany. These mobile sortation robots can operate in fleets to efficiently and fluidly move parcels from receiving through dispatch to avoid sortation bottlenecks that can occur with rigid systems, especially during periods of peak volume. GreyMatter intelligence software is incorporated as a learning layer in the Ranger robots, enabling the robots to communicate with each other and the GreyMatter central system to continuously recalculate order fulfillment priorities and inventory movement patterns.

The AI-enabled mobile sortation system is easily scaled, making it an investment-friendly option for a range of applications across retail and logistics industries.

Ash Kandhari, Managing Director, Rex Brown, said, “We chose Ranger Mobile Sort because we are seeing an increase in growth volumes from customers and we have our own ambitious goals for our company, so we need a partner that can support us to grow the business without any constraints. Ranger Mobile Sort easily integrates with our operations. A partner like GreyOrange that aligns with our future-orientated mission is key.” Kandhari adds: “Ranger Mobile Sort seamlessly connects with our existing packaging machines through auto induction. The inherent flexibility in the system enables us to start as per the current needs and allows for scale-up as the business grows, thereby reducing the risk of large capital expenditure in the initial stages.”

Nigel Lahiri, Sales Director EMEA, GreyOrange, said, “Today, complexity within the warehouse is the norm due to constantly shifting business requirements which include volume changes during peak periods and a constant pressure to cut operational costs. By choosing our solution under consultancy of our partner BigBox Group, Rex Brown will implement Ranger Mobile Sort to manage the complexity of the inventory they distribute as well as scale their sorting capacity to 20,000 parcels per shift with plans to double this volume over the next few years. With Ranger Mobile Sort, this is entirely possible.”
Rex Brown’s services cover sourcing, branding and distribution, with both B2B and B2C capabilities. It operates across EMEA and is expanding across APAC, with a growing capacity of 30,000 daily shipments.

Ready for flexible fulfillment that adapts in real-time? Let’s chat.

Rex Brown To Roll-Out Modular Sortation Robots

REX BROWN TO ROLL-OUT MODULAR SORTATION ROBOTS

From Logistics Manager
By Christopher Walton
July 1, 2020

GreyOrange is to supply a fleet of modular sortation robots to UK-based e-commerce specialist Rex Brown.

The sourcing, branding and distribution specialist has chosen the GreyOrange Ranger Mobile Sort, which was launched in February 2019, which will run on its GreyMatter software platform.

Rex Brown currently processes 2.5 million orders per year for customers ranging from Unilever to SME’s such as Emma Bunton’s Kit & Kin baby care company. Following the implementation Rex Brown will have the capacity to process over 10 million orders per year.

Rex Brown currently processes 2.5 million orders per year for customers ranging from Unilever to SME’s such as Emma Bunton’s Kit & Kin baby care company. Following the implementation Rex Brown will have the capacity to process over 10 million orders per year.

Ash Kandhari, managing director of Rex Brown, said, “We chose Ranger Mobile Sort because we are seeing an increase in growth volumes from customers and we have our own ambitious goals for our company, so we need a partner that can support us to grow the business without any constraints. Ranger Mobile Sort easily integrates with our operations. A partner like GreyOrange that aligns with our future-orientated mission is key.

“Ranger Mobile Sort seamlessly connects with our existing packaging machines through auto induction. The inherent flexibility in the system enables us to start as per the current needs and allows for scale-up as the business grows, thereby reducing the risk of large capital expenditure in the initial stages.”

Ready for flexible fulfillment that adapts in real-time? Let’s chat.

UK eCommerce Specialist Invests In Warehouse Robots

UK ECOMMERCE SPECIALIST INVESTS IN WAREHOUSE ROBOTS

From Handling & Storage Solutions
June 30, 2020

Rex Brown has announced a strategic partnership with AI and automation supplier GreyOrange which will see order capacity progress to 10 million orders per year.

GreyOrange says the Ranger Mobile Sort, the new GreyOrange fleet of modular sortation robots, will bring the latest automation to Rex Brown’s warehouses in a simple and scalable way.

Rex Brown, a fast-growing e-commerce expert in sourcing, branding and distribution, chose Ranger Mobile Sort for its ability to adapt to changes in real time, both within the distribution centre and externally as order patterns and fulfillment expectations fluctuate. Additionally, Ranger Mobile Sort will help Rex Brown meet its own ambitious sustainability targets.

Rex Brown currently processes 2.5 million orders per year for customers ranging from major household name brand Unilever to small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) challenger brands, including Emma Bunton’s Kit & Kin baby care company. With the implementation of Ranger Mobile Sort and GreyMatter, Rex Brown will have the capacity to process over 10 million orders each year for its customers.

Ash Kandhari, managing director, Rex Brown, said: “We chose Ranger Mobile Sort because we are seeing an increase in growth volumes from customers and we have our own ambitious goals for our company, so we need a partner that can support us to grow the business without any constraints. Ranger Mobile Sort easily integrates with our operations. A partner like GreyOrange that aligns with our future-orientated mission is key.”

Kandhari adds: “Ranger Mobile Sort seamlessly connects with our existing packaging machines through auto induction. The inherent flexibility in the system enables us to start as per the current needs and allows for scale-up as the business grows, thereby reducing the risk of large capital expenditure in the initial stages.”

Ranger Mobile Sort

GreyOrange launched Ranger Mobile Sort in February 2019 at LogiMAT in Stuttgart, Germany. These mobile sortation robots can operate in fleets to efficiently and fluidly move parcels from receiving through dispatch to avoid sortation bottlenecks that can occur with rigid systems, especially during periods of peak volume. GreyMatter intelligence software is incorporated as a learning layer in the Ranger robots, enabling the robots to communicate with each other and the GreyMatter central system to continuously recalculate order fulfillment priorities and inventory movement patterns.

The AI-enabled mobile sortation system is easily scaled, making it an investment-friendly option for a range of applications across retail and logistics industries.

Nigel Lahiri, sales director EMEA, GreyOrange, said: “Today, complexity within the warehouse is the norm due to constantly shifting business requirements which include volume changes during peak periods and a constant pressure to cut operational costs. By choosing our solution under consultancy of our partner BigBox Group, Rex Brown will implement Ranger Mobile Sort to manage the complexity of the inventory they distribute as well as scale their sorting capacity to 20,000 parcels per shift with plans to double this volume over the next few years. With Ranger Mobile Sort, this is entirely possible.”

Ready for flexible fulfillment that adapts in real-time? Let’s chat.

GreyOrange Announces Strategic Partnership with E-commerce Company Rex Brown

GreyOrange Announces Strategic Partnership with E-commerce Company Rex Brown

AI and automation leader GreyOrange to provide warehouse automation to UK-based e-commerce expert

 

LONDON – June 30, 2020GreyOrange, a global software and mobile robotics provider that leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning to optimize fulfillment operations for companies worldwide, today announced that Ranger™ MOBILE SORT, the new GreyOrange fleet of modular sortation robots, will bring the latest automation to Rex Brown’s warehouses in a simple and scalable way.

Rex Brown, a fast-growing e-commerce expert in sourcing, branding and distribution, chose Ranger MOBILE SORT for its ability to adapt to changes in real time, both within the distribution center and externally as order patterns and fulfillment expectations fluctuate.  Additionally, Ranger MOBILE SORT will help Rex Brown meet their own ambitious sustainability targets.

Rex Brown currently processes 2.5 million orders per year for customers ranging from major household name brand Unilever to small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) challenger brands, including Emma Bunton’s Kit & Kin baby care company. With the implementation of Ranger MOBILE SORT and GreyMatter, Rex Brown will have the capacity to process over 10 million orders each year for its customers.

GreyOrange launched Ranger MOBILE SORT in February 2019 at LogiMAT in Stuttgart, Germany. These mobile sortation robots can operate in fleets to efficiently and fluidly move parcels from receiving through dispatch to avoid sortation bottlenecks that can occur with rigid systems, especially during periods of peak volume. GreyMatter intelligence software is incorporated as a learning layer in the Ranger robots, enabling the robots to communicate with each other and the GreyMatter central system to continuously recalculate order fulfillment priorities and inventory movement patterns. The AI-enabled mobile sortation system is easily scaled, making it an investment-friendly option for a range of applications across retail and logistics industries.

Ash Kandhari, Managing Director, Rex Brown, said, “We chose Ranger MOBILE SORT because we are seeing an increase in growth volumes from customers and we have our own ambitious goals for our company, so we need a partner that can support us to grow the business without any constraints. Ranger MOBILE SORT easily integrates with our operations. A partner like GreyOrange that aligns with our future-orientated mission is key.” Kandhari adds: “Ranger MOBILE SORT seamlessly connects with our existing packaging machines through auto induction. The inherent flexibility in the system enables us to start as per the current needs and allows for scale-up as the business grows, thereby reducing the risk of large capital expenditure in the initial stages.”

Nigel Lahiri, Sales Director EMEA, GreyOrange, said, “Today, complexity within the warehouse is the norm due to constantly shifting business requirements which include volume changes during peak periods and a constant pressure to cut operational costs. By choosing our solution under consultancy of our partner BigBox Group, Rex Brown will implement Ranger MOBILE SORT to manage the complexity of the inventory they distribute as well as scale their sorting capacity to 20,000 parcels per shift with plans to double this volume over the next few years. With Ranger MOBILE SORT, this is entirely possible.”

Rex Brown’s services cover sourcing, branding and distribution, with both B2B and B2C capabilities. It operates across EMEA and is expanding across APAC, with a growing capacity of 30,000 daily shipments.

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About GreyOrange

GreyOrange is a global company that modernizes order fulfillment through Artificial Intelligence-driven software and mobile robots built together so they cooperate in deciding on and executing warehouse activities that maximize payoffs and minimize tradeoffs to create the highest yield.  The company’s Always-Solving™ Fulfillment Operating System GreyMatter considers predictive and real-time data regarding orders, promises, inventory, shipping windows, and resources to orchestrate how workers and robots work together to fulfill the right orders at the right time. GreyOrange experts help organizations master fulfillment in the Age of Immediacy so they keep promises, capture more revenue, and improve the work experience for warehouse employees. GreyOrange has core operations in the United States, Germany, Japan, Singapore and India. www.GreyOrange.com

About Rex Brown

Rex Brown is an award winning UK based ecommerce specialist, enabling both multi-national brands as well as fast growing challenger brands unlock their potential in the ecommerce space. Through the use of cutting edge hardware and software technology, Rex Brown ensures their clients are able to deliver best in class service. In addition their extensive access to ecommerce retailers and urivalled experience of working with marketplaces, ensures enviable levels of top line revenue growth underpinned by ongoing profit optimisation for all brand partners. Rex Brown primarily services Western Europe from its core operation in the UK, although this will be extended to a global coverage over the course of 2020.