Founded in 2008, Zalando SE has become Europe’s leading online fashion and lifestyle platform. From its headquarters in Berlin, it serves over 32 million customers in 17 markets.
The Nordic countries are among Zalando’s fastest-growing markets and to achieve further expansion there, it needed to be closer to its customers and offer faster delivery times.
“We have a desire to be as close as possible to our fashion-savvy customers,” confirms Zalando’s Director of Logistics Development, Carl-Friedrich zu Knyphausen. “By setting up a local fulfilment centre in Brunna, Sweden, our aim was to cut lead times in half and improve delivery speeds.”
Keeping customers happy
The commissioning of the new fulfilment centre has raised the number of central Zalando logistics centres in Europe to 12. Its proximity to transport is also important because Zalando’s product assortments grow quickly and change frequently.
“Most important to us is the ability to provide fast and reliable deliveries, as well as a positive customer experience,” adds Carl-Friedrich.
“Zalando has ambitious growth targets, so we need state-of-the-art systems that allow us to process items in the most efficient way possible. The ergonomics of these systems are also important.”
The ideal testing ground
Zalando selected Vanderlande’s AIRTRAX Pocket sorter to act as the heart of the new facility. Containing 6,500 pockets, it has been implemented as a pilot project.
“We set up the pilot in Brunna because we had confidence in the infrastructure of the AIRTRAX Pocket,” explains Carl-Friedrich. “It is innovative technology, but we know that Vanderlande had the ability to get it up and running successfully.”
“I have been impressed by Vanderlande’s attention to detail on the AIRTRAX Pocket sorter. It has combined the best elements from different types of technology into the solution.”
Ergonomic and extendable
Zalando can store items in a space-saving manner, as well as sort a large number of different items quickly and with accuracy. Due to its scalability, AIRTRAX Pocket is extremely flexible in handling rapidly growing and changing product portfolios.
“We look to technologies that can help us drive down throughput times and increase productivity,” says Carl-Friedrich. “Vanderlande’s AIRTRAX Pocket was the ideal technology for our operations in Brunna.
“Our customers love the service and products we provide, and that has to be supported by an effective network strategy and the decisions we make regarding automation. For this to happen successfully, we rely on the trust, solutions and cooperation from partners such as Vanderlande.”