KNAPP is supplying its pocket sorter technology at the Berlin distribution centre of leading online fashion retailer, ASOS. This follows successful use of the pocket sortation system – engineered by KNAPP subsidiary, Dürkopp Fördertechnik – at the UK distribution centre of ASOS in Barnsley.
The heart of KNAPP’s e-commerce solution for the Berlin DC is an OSR ShuttleTM store, which ensures both the flexibility required by the frequently changing article range and error-free picking at the Pick-it-Easy workstations. KNAPP handles the task of sortation by using transport pockets combined with a hanging goods system. Perfect for the ASOS product range, each pocket has space for all the items that would fit into a shopping bag.
The pocket sorter system uses a unique algorithm to sort randomly picked items into an exact sequence. Flat-packed and hanging goods are consolidated at one of 200 packing stations in the precise sequence needed for dispatch. Explained Heimo Robosch, Executive Vice President of KNAPP AG, “At the pack stations, we only provide the items that belong to one individual customer order for picking from the pockets. The next order then arrives once the previous pack order has been completed. The streamlining of all processes results in a reduction in costs as well as an optimized transit time, both crucial to e-commerce businesses.”
Proven at Barnsley DC
Dürkopp Fördertechnik delivered a pocket sorter solution to ASOS in the UK at its DC in Barnsley, South Yorkshire, back in 2014. Initially designed with three modules, the system was increased to four modules during 2016. A fifth module has recently been installed, increasing the overall performance to 30,000 items per hour, and the system will be further expanded by the addition of a dynamic buffer this year to allow the fully automatic storage and retrieval of about 80,000 single items.
Growth in fashion and lifestyle
The continuing e-commerce boom is paying dividends for KNAPP – online commerce is showing extremely strong growth across all areas, accounting for more than 70 per cent in certain sectors. KNAPP is also recording very strong growth in fashion and lifestyle. In collaboration with its German subsidiary, Dürkopp Fördertechnik, KNAPP is concentrating on solutions that make extremely high throughput and strict sequences possible.