Cost-efficient brownfield / retrofit solutions from WITRON
For the expansion of their existing logistics infrastructure, retailers have for a long time mainly preferred greenfield solutions. There is currently a trend on the market, both nationally and internationally, for brownfield solutions - i.e., the integration of new technology into existing buildings - to become increasingly attractive and a viable addition to the greenfield strategy. Specifically, this can involve both modernizations and expansions of technology and building. Consequently, it is a matter of transforming facilities that were previously used manually into automated logistics centers.
True to the credo „use your assets“, there are many factors that speak in favor of making existing logistics structures fit for the future within a brownfield strategy and thus saving money and time.
The advantages of a brownfield strategy are versatile
End-to-end implementation concept required
In order to evaluate whether the existing logistics facility is suitable for the future strategic approach, the first step is to obtain a thorough analysis and an end-to-end implementation concept. This includes:
Brownfield references worldwide
The WITRON experts are very familiar with the requirement to economically map brownfield solutions with automated storage and picking technology. The company is considered one of the global market leaders in the design, implementation, maintenance, and system operation of highly dynamic distribution centers. Since the company’s foundation more than 50 years ago, 2,000+ projects have been successfully implemented - including more than 100 highly efficient logistics centers especially for food retailers throughout Europe, North America, and Australia. More than 30 percent of these are brownfield solutions.
COOP in Norway, for example, has increased the output of its dry, fresh, and frozen food areas by 30 percent during ongoing operations at its multi-temperature distribution center in Oslo by installing eleven additional COM machines, including corresponding infrastructure such as further pallet storage aisles, tray storage aisles, stacker cranes, stretch-wrappers, depalletizers, and conveyors, and now picks more than 625,000 cases daily.
For the Swiss food retailer MIGROS in Neuendorf, WITRON integrated a completely new logistics system into an operational distribution center during ongoing operations and transformed it into a fully functional omni-channel distribution center together with the existing facility. For this purpose, WITRON has installed a highly dynamic automated case and piece picking solution (OPM + AIO), and modernized, as well as optimized already existing logistics areas (receiving, shipping, e-commerce area), mechanical elements (high bay warehouse, conveyor systems), IT, and material flow processes. The system is currently designed for a daily pick performance of 472,000 cases and supplies 700 stores, as well as many thousands of home shopping customers in Switzerland from a range of more than 100,000 different items per year. The existing building in Neuendorf was complemented by a state-of-the-art, fully automated frozen food warehouse with WITRON OPM technology, which supplies 1,400 stores daily with more than 100,000 cases in a store-friendly manner. Order picking is done on both pallets and roll containers.
In addition, MIGROS replaced a completely manual convenience solution with a highly automated WITRON system (OPM, DPS, ATS) at its existing building in Suhr to stack goods onto pallets, roll containers, and into totes. This was preceded by the modernization of the dry goods logistics processes, which included the installation of a fully automated picking system with 28 COM machines on the roof of the existing distribution center as part of the “Future COM” project. A masterpiece in terms of both technology and architecture. This site now supplies a total of 600 stores and 300 shops (kiosks, gas stations, etc.) with more than 430,000 cases daily.
The Spanish omni-channel retailer Condis in Montcada uses an existing manual high bay warehouse to supply a WITRON OPM system with goods.
French food retailers such as Diapar, E.Leclerc, and Intermarché also rely on WITRON’s brownfield experience. In North America, economic solutions were integrated end-to-end into the existing building structure for customers such as Albertsons, Kroger, and Sobeys.