Austrian Company KNAPP, the world leader in order picking system such as OSR Shuttle™ and A-Frame technology, has opened a subsidiary in Australia. With a growing client base in Australia, the decision was an easy one to justify. Robert Seiler, from KNAPP Australia Pty Ltd explains: “Over the last years KNAPP have received several large Australian orders for warehouse automation systems. Our commitment to these clients and our future ones means that we want to support them, not just with hotline support, but also on the ground maintenance and project management services.”
With over 2.300 employees worldwide, 20 subsidiaries and 13 representative offices around the world, Australia is a natural progression for KNAPP. “KNAPP specialize in automating and speeding up the order picking of orders consisting of many lines usually in the retail, pharma, cosmetic, fashion and e-commerce sector. With the proliferation of e-commerce and the associated order profile, our growth has been huge. Australian companies don’t have to put up with what has been traditionally available in Australia any more. In a global economy and supply chain, the best technologies should be used and can be sourced from anywhere.”
KNAPP is the inventor of shuttle technology, with their OSR Shuttle™, going back to 2002 with their first prototype customer installation, which is still running. With over 200 installations and 15,000 installed shuttles, they are the world leader by a long margin. Together with goods-to-person Pick-it-Easy workstations, phenomenal pick rates can be achieved.
The same goes to say about their A-Frame technology, where they are also the world leader along with other technologies such as RF, Voice and the latest technology pick by vision.
“To be able to compete in today’s global economy, Australian Companies need to employ the latest in warehouse automation. Smaller orders being picked more frequently are just some of the challenges facing Australian Companies. An ageing population makes it paramount, that you utilize your workforce more efficiently. And that’s where KNAPP comes in.”
Technological lead expanded further
Last year the KNAPP Group invested more than 6 percent of the turnover or 23.5 million euros in its research and development activities. In the KNAPP Group, more than 400 people worked on new and further developments in the past fiscal year.
COO Franz Mathi: “Intralogistics and our solutions are influenced significantly by the purchasing behaviour of consumers. From the classic branch store to internet commerce, the number of sales channels is continuously growing and the availability of sales items has become more and more important. The market calls for flexible systems suited to serve various trade channels. Our opinion is that, with our solutions surrounding the basic OSR Shuttle™ technology, we can flexibly adapt to growing and changing market demands. For the British department chain stores John Lewis and Boots, for example, we implemented trendsetting automation solutions.“
98 % export quota – increase in turnover by 80 % in the fashion segment
With a share of turnover of more than 70%, Western Europe is the largest sales region, followed by the region North America in which turnover more than doubled. Latin America remained very stable, while the turnover tripled in the Asia-Pacific economic region. China, South Korea and Australia especially contributed to this growth.
The fashion business area had a disproportionally high contribution to the growth, showing an increase in turnover by 80 percent compared to the previous year. The large-scale projects in the fashion area include the automation of the distribution centres for Hugo Boss and Olymp with an order volume that runs into the tens of millions. KNAPP together with Dürkopp Fördertechnik are the market leader in transport and sorting systems for hanging garments for the fashion industry.
Robert Seiler concludes: “We see an exciting future for KNAPP in Australia. Australian Businesses need to become as efficient and streamlined as possible, or overseas internet businesses will continue to make inroads into our retail sector. And with smaller order quantities and faster delivery times demanded by customers, this will become even more of an issue.”