When a leading budget retailer decided to move to a larger warehouse and distribution centre, it was determined not to significantly increase its material handling costs. Fortunately for 99p Stores, technology offered by HOPPECKE Industrial Batteries has enable it to make the most of its materials handling fleet, saving it thousands of pounds over the length of a five-year contract.
Founded in 2001, 99p Stores has enjoyed phenomenal growth, boasting 135 stores across the UK. During the recession the company has thrived with shoppers keener than ever to track down a bargain and the firm plans to open even more outlets this year. As a result the company needed to expand into new premises at its central distribution centre in Northampton.
Explained the company’s Operations Director, Hussein Lalani: "At around 37,000 square metres, the new warehouse at Pineham Industrial Estate, Northampton is more than twice the size of old facility. However, we needed to avoid doubling our handling costs when it came moving products on and off the site."
The company was then introduced to HOPPECKE and the battery systems specialist soon identified a number of issues that needed to be addressed if 99p Stores was to achieve its aim of improving efficiency while increasing the scale of its operations.
HOPPECKE Sales Director, Gus Whyte, explained: "We worked closely with the company to install a new Trak Air High Frequency charger system, capable of charging 32 batteries at any one time and incorporating a ‘call forward’ function that signals to operators which battery is to be used next."
Most importantly, the high frequency charger is around 30 per cent more energy efficient than traditional systems.
In addition to the charger,HOPPECKE has also supplied 82 of its acclaimed Track Air batteries and the company will also be providing ongoing technical and maintenance support.
Continued Hussein: "The complete system was only installed in May 2010 but we are already on target to save around £50,000 this year. Over the length of the contract we expect to save around £250,000 in electricity costs alone.
"On top of this further savings will be made through reduced wear and tear on our trucks, reductions in downtime and the fact we will no longer need to bring in extra trucks to cope with peaks in demand," he added.