Puma, one of the world's leading sporting goods manufacturers for sport shoes, clothing and accessories, has invested in a new central European Distribution Centre in Geiselwind, Germany. The objective was to bundle multiple B2C/B2B distribution centres into one fulfilment centre. The new omni-channel DC serves all channels (retail/wholesale, direct) from one location and fulfils orders from throughout Europe.
CENTRALISATION Consolidating the European distribution centres into a central fulfilment centre in Geiselwind, Germany
OMNI-CHANNEL Fulfilment of retail/wholesale and direct order from one distribution centre
AUTOMATION A high degree of automation ensures a consistent output level - even when there are drastic peaks
Puma, one of the world's leading sporting brands, earned sales of 5.5 billion euros (EBITDA: 440 million euros) in 2019 and employed over 14,700 people. The sales breakdown is 75% retail stores and 25% direct-to-consumer, with footwear being the strongest product segment at 46% (38% clothing, 16% accessories).
The sporting goods manufacturer, which is based in Herzogenaurach in Bavaria, distributes its products to over 120 countries worldwide (36% EMEA, 35% Americas, 28% APAC).
In the past, Puma made use of a decentralised distribution network with local, separate DCs for B2B (retail/wholesale) und B2C (direct-to-consumer). High inventory levels and process costs were important reasons for a strategy change. Most importantly, however, Puma was no longer able to offer its customers (internal or external) the level of service they expected. Therefore, in 2019, the sporting goods manufacturer decided to merge all 22 European distribution centres into one central fulfilment centre: the perfect omni-channel DC.
Puma is experiencing strong growth in all three sales channels. Thus it was important to develop a solution that could cover both retail/wholesale and e-commerce orders. Because it is difficult for Puma to predict how the individual orders will break down across channels on any given day, it was very important for the intralogistics solution to be extremely flexible. Therefore, one of the most important design criteria was a high degree of automation to make it possible to react quickly to changes of the order structures - and to do so with consistently high quality.
In the goods receiving area, Puma processes returns, cartons and large goods. If the reuse criteria are fulfilled, they are repackaged and stored, as are goods in the shuttle system (713,000 storage locations). Large goods are put into storage in the large parts warehouse.
The order picking process is covered by the standardised FlashPick® order fulfilment system. FlashPick® is the modular Goods-to-Person (GTP) system for single-piece picking. Particularly omni-channel business models allow the system to truly shine, because it responds flexibly to order structures and transacts orders individually and independently of each other.
The shuttle system retrieves the goods fully automatically and supplies 27 manual order picking workstations (PickCenter One). There, the operator picks the goods directly into cartons or totes for further processing. The "One Source. One Target."approach means that the system features maximum accuracy with unbeatable speed.
After the pick, the goods are returned to storage in the shuttle, while the order is sent either directly to goods issue or to packaging.
At goods issue, the goods are either sent directly to the lorries using outbound sorters or stored intermediately in a shuttle buffer for shop orders. The shuttle buffer is connected directly to palletising robots (Autostax) which make the mixed cartons available on pallets fully automatically.
FlashPick® - as the core of the solution - was the ideal choice for Puma due to the single management approach. Orders fulfilment is customised and flexible. This enables the sporting goods manufacturer to fulfil both large and small orders regardless of any fluctuations in the order structures. This makes it possible to have later acceptance times and earlier deliveries at the same time. Another step forward for Puma in its "FOREVER FASTER" strategy.
A 10-year service contract ensures maximum system availability with transparent and predictable costs. The sporting goods manufacturer can concentrate on its core processes while 30 onsite TGW technicians work proactively on maintenance and continuous improvement of the system. Puma benefits from cost transparency and low Total Cost of Ownership.
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