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.

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