Automated warehouse robots unlock growth in e-commerce

This rapidly growing online retailer found that manual order picking was holding the business back.

We worked with our partners Geek+ robotics to create a cost effective, flexible automated warehouse picking system using Autonomous Mobile Robots.

Background

  • RangePlus is a rapidly growing online retailer of toiletries, cosmetics, confectionary and groceries
  • Its Croydon fulfilment centre stocks around 243,000 products and handles over 250,000 orders per year
  • Manual processes were hindering growth, especially during peak demand when volumes double
  • Breathe Technologies previously designed and implemented an automated warehouse packing system (including our warehouse management software Packing module) which increased productivity by 25% and reduced operating costs proportionately.

Solution

  • An innovative goods-to-person (GTP) robotic warehouse picking system
  • Uses Geek+ P800 robotic warehouse pickers and movable storage racking
  • Safety systems include light barriers and collision avoidance
  • Software intelligently optimises warehouse picking strategies and picking sequences
  • Seamlessly integrates with RangePlus’ legacy system

Benefits

  • 300% improvement in picking rate and order picking time
  • 50% more SKUs in the same space
  • 100% ROI in under two years
  • Reduced error rates and waste
  • Flexibility to increase the number of storage racks and Autonomous Mobile Robots during seasonal peaks and as the business grows
  • Modular warehouse automation system that can integrate with other processes and be easily reconfigured to need or location

Breathe Technologies are helping deliver automated warehouse solutions that are efficient, cost effective and scalable. We’re now poised for rapid growth within the wholesale e-commerce sector globally.

Shabbab Al-Ghamdi, Co-Founder, RangePlus RangePlus

Background:

Established in 2014, RangePlus is a UK-based pure play online retailer with a 13,500 square foot fulfilment centre based in Croydon.

The business stocks a diverse range of around 4,000 SKUs across toiletries, cosmetics, confectionary and grocery products.

Breathe Technologies began working with the business in 2017, when the management team recognised that warehouse automation was key to achieving their growth potential.

This involved creating an automated warehouse packing system combining a new conveyor, semi-auto case sealer and our warehouse management software Packing module (for scan, look up/confirmation, labelling print) and integrating this with RangePlus’ legacy system.

Our warehouse automation solution was a huge success, increasing productivity by 25% and delivering a proportionate reduction in operating costs.

warehouse Automated storage and retrieval system with goods-to-person picking
ASRS warehouse and Warehouse Management Software

The situation:

As SKU numbers and order volumes continued to rise, the business soon turned its attention to warehouse picking.

With a high number of small and irregular goods, order picking had become complicated and manual processes were time consuming and prone to error.

This had the potential to become a growth limiting factor, as orders double during seasonal peaks and the business is targeting 25% year-on-year growth in order volumes and 40% in SKUs.

The business needed an automation solution which could be flexible and scalable enough to adapt to its changing requirements.

Contact our experts to understand more about our warehouse process automation solutions

Manual processes were slowing us down and adding more staff wasn’t going to solve the issue. Taking a considered, step-by-step approach to warehouse automation is ensuring we grow the business profitably.

Shabbab Al-Ghamdi, Co-Founder, RangePlus RangePlus

Using our expertise and insight in automation, warehouse systems design and warehouse technology we analysed key factors such as target throughput, storage requirements, operational considerations and integration with other technology.

We discussed many order picking options with RangePlus, but clearly the best suited was Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMRs) from Geek+.

Geek+ are a key partner of Breathe Technologies with a shared commitment to warehouse systems innovation, return on investment and unparalleled customer service.

Working collaboratively, our teams designed and implemented an innovative robotic warehouse picking system.

warehouse agv
Warehouse automation solution for ecommerce

System:

  • Deployment of Geek+ P800 robotic warehouse pickers and automated charging stations
  • Installation of movable storage racking into a warehouse storage zone
  • Production and placement of QR navigation codes to route robots between storage racking and the picking station
  • Creating a workstation with light guards to protect workers

Software:

  • Software configuration to intelligently optimise warehouse picking strategies and picking sequences
  • Full integration of the new automated warehouse picking solution with the customer’s legacy system
warehouse management software
Warehouse automation services

Services:

  • Process improvement analysis and warehouse system design
  • Preventative maintenance and on-site servicing
  • Helpdesk, remote user support and training

Working closely with the customer and Geek+ we’ve created an automated warehouse picking system that’s incredibly flexible, modular and perfectly suited to high-growth e-commerce environments.

Marcus Uprichard, Head of Business Development & Partnerships, Breathe Technologies Breathe Technologies

The automated warehouse picking system designed and implemented for RangePlus is proving highly successful, optimising the business’ picking process and unlocking substantial benefits.

The benefits of warehouse automation
Efficiency

300% picking improvement

Using Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR) is delivering a 300% improvement in picking rate and order picking time, whilst reducing error rates and eliminating waste

Capacity

50% more SKUs

The business can now maximise space by stocking 50% more SKUs in the storage racking and the robots can run 24/7 using automated charging

Return on Investment

ROI<2 years

The system will deliver 100% ROI in under two years and continue generating exponential benefits as the business grows

Rapid deployment

Short time to value

The solution was designed, implemented and delivered for RangePlus in a matter of months, accelerating time to value

Integration

Unlocking further gains

It can easily integrate with other warehouse automation solutions in adjacent processes (put away and packing) to unlock further gains in efficiency, productivity and ROI

Continuous improvement

Increasing speed

Artificial Intelligence (AI) manages the collation of stock, ensuring that the most in demand items are close to the operator so the journey is as fast and efficient as possible

Flexibility

Enabling agility

The Autonomous Mobile Robots and storage racking can be moved and reconfigured to meet changing requirements or locations

Scalable

Managing peak

RangePlus can increase the storage racking space and number of robotic warehouse pickers during seasonal peaks and as the business grows

This automated warehouse picking system has been a wise financial decision. We can now significantly increase the amount we pick pack and ship…so the system is paying for itself.

Shabbab Al-Ghamdi, Co-Founder, RangePlus RangePlus

RangePlus is another great example of how we harmonise warehouse automation systems, software and services to unlock value and deliver transformative benefits for businesses of all sizes.

Claire Umney , Managing Director, Breathe Technologies Breathe Technologies

We are delighted to see our smart picking solution enable RangePlus to achieve an efficient, flexible and accurate operation process. In the vigorous growing E-commerce sectors, we believe this digital transformation would help them increase their competitiveness.

Lit Fung, VP and Managing Director, Overseas Business , Geek+ Geek+