The French do-it-yourself and interior design market leader Leroy Merlin offers its customers a large selection of products and high service quality. In order to accelerate its deliveries and increase the efficiency of its order fulfillment, the company invested in a new warehouse and fulfillment center in Réau, near Paris. The new solution will also make it possible to significantly reduce the total cost of ownership.
AWARD At the beginning of 2023, Leroy Merlin and its project partners (including TGW) received the "Grand Prix des Rois de la Supply Chain" award for the fulfillment center erected in Réau, near Paris
OPTIMIZATION Reduced lead times, increased productivity and picking quality
HIGHEST PERFORMANCE Optimal management of the suppliers' material flows, of the storage processes and of distribution to shops and online customers
EMPLOYEE HEALTH Ergonomic design to provide optimal working conditions, minimize the risk of injury and achieve the highest productivity, as well as to attract more female employees
AUTOMATION High-performance combination of shuttle warehouse and GTP picking workstations
The heart of the intelligent solution is our FlashPick® system. The extensive logistics solution encompasses a nine-aisle warehouse with over 170 Stingray shuttles and 80,000 storage locations; it boasts a throughput of 70,000 order lines per day and can handle large items up to 800 x 600 mm.
Energy-efficient KingDrive® conveyors interconnect the various functional areas. The shuttle warehouse is connected to six error-free 1:1 high-performance picking workstations (1 order tote to 1 storage tote), where the retail orders are compiled. Our Warehouse Control System (WCS) plans, controls and monitors all processes.
Before, manual palletizing was strenuous and complicated due to the variety of products and especially in the case of heavy or cumbersome items. That situation became unsustainable both for the personnel and in light of the values of Leroy Merlin. This called for a complete overhaul of the logistics with the help of new technology.
The chosen solution consists of automated goods-to-person picking on the one hand and an automated warehouse utilizing AGVs on the other hand.
The automated picking area consists of partially automated depalletizing stations with automatic replenishment from goods receiving and from the warehouse by means of AGVs (Automated Guided Vehicles).
The ergonomics of the depalletizing stations were carefully examined using the RULA method to prevent musculoskeletal disorders and improve quality of life at work.
The Autostax solution (robots to automatically palletize mixed pallets) was discarded because Leroy Merlin's variety of products is too great, especially when it comes to heavy and cumbersome items.
In consultation with TGW, Leroy Merlin opted for the semi-automated Slotstax palletizing solution, supplemented with a robot for retrieving heavy and cumbersome items from the storage totes.
The partially-automated solution for palletizing mixed pallets for shops that Leroy Merlin selected renders arduous manual tasks obsolete and at the same time simplifies the depalletizing process. Leroy Merlin now delivers better, structured pallets to shops without product breakage. By simplifying the processes and reducing the strain, it became possible to attract more female employees and combat the labor shortage.
From the very beginning, providing employees with a pleasant work environment was an important point for those in charge at Leroy Merlin. The picking workstations therefore meet the highest demands: ergonomic design and user friendliness make for optimal working conditions.
Our height-adjustable PickCenter ONE workstations and the stations for manual palletizing and depalletizing fulfill these requirements.
We worked together with Leroy Merlin to produce prototypes in advance and validated them by means of 3D simulations; thus we could incorporate the workstations chosen by the employees that Leroy Merlin's corporate management had involved in the decision-making process.
Fifteen TGW specialists handle maintenance and support of the Leroy Merlin installation to keep things running smoothly. The Lifetime Services maintenance contract is valid for the next several years and will ensure, for example, that operational costs can be anticipated and controlled.
Leroy Merlin supplies its own shops as well as direct customers. Order profiles therefore vary widely, from single item orders for direct customers to mass orders for the shops. It was therefore necessary to develop an automated picking solution that could handle this particularity without sacrificing performance.
This automated picking solution from TGW can process both split case and full case orders and compile shop pallets without variations in performance level. And it does all that promptly and affordably, without errors or breakage.
The picked, stretch-wrapped and labeled pallets are automatically made ready for dispatch.
Leroy Merlin belongs to Adeo, a subsidiary of the Mulliez Group (Auchan, Decathlon, …) and is one of the largest DIY and interior design markets in Europe. Leroy Merlin is the French market leader.