Time: February 20, 2019
Landmark Arabia’s home retailer brand Home Centre has announced the successful commencement of work in its first fully automated national distribution center in Sudair (Saudi Authority for Industrial Cities and Technology Zones — MODON), a developing industrial and technological city located approximately 120 kms away from Riyadh. A pilot initiative by Landmark Arabia, it is the first fully functional automated distribution center of its kind in Saudi Arabia that operates state-of-the-art AGVs (automated guided vehicles) in conjunction with automated conveyor systems.
The new facility incorporates the latest technologies provided by Dematic N.V, promising safety, improved efficiency and productivity. It sits on an area of 150,000 square meter leased by Landmark Arabia from the MODON industrial area in Sudair. The 45,000-square-meter built-up semi-automated facility is ergonomically safe. The organization is also considering collaborations with other logistics partners for future investments.
Mihin Shah, chief supply chain officer, Landmark Group, said: “By building smarter warehouses and investing in better technological infrastructure we want to ensure that our supply chains are operating at peak efficiency. The newly built automated distribution center in Sudair will also give the local staff a chance to learn the latest and emerging technologies, which is important for our business. As an organization, we believe that adopting new technologies and upskilling our employees are both critical elements that contribute to our success in this industry.”
The warehouse features driverless vehicles for the first time in Saudi warehouses that will help in streamlining processes.
In addition to ensuring less damage to goods and better inventory management, the automation of processes within the facility eliminates the possibility of any HSE (health, safety and environment) accidents that may arise while handling bulky furniture items. Currently, the Home Centre Saudi operations team has reported a multifold enhancement in picking.
Key positions in the distribution center operations, including that of HSE manager and security manager are currently being held by Saudi nationals. The application of artificial intelligence (AI) in day-to-day operations will further streamline processes and also create new-age job opportunities for Saudi youth.
Landmark Arabia was launched in the Kingdom in 1994. The group’s retail offerings include more than 10 homegrown brands such as Centrepoint, Babyshop, Shoe Mart, Lifestyle, Splash, Max, Home Centre, Home Box, Shoexpress, Iconic and hospitality brands like Fitness First.