Kenco Logistics plans to open up dedicated physical warehouse space focused on innovation
Kenco said this new warehouse space will function as what it called a true test facility for its team of innovation specialists whom will assess value-added technology and also provide advanced visibility into various efforts focused on testing potential supply chain management solutions and technological advances outside of a live operation
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Chattanooga Tennessee-based 3PL Kenco said last week that it will be opening up a dedicated 10,000 square-foot physical warehouse space, which will serve as an expansion of its Supply Chain Innovation Lab that was introduced by the company in 2015.
Kenco said this new warehouse space will function as what it called a true test facility for its team of innovation specialists whom will assess value-added technology and also provide advanced visibility into various efforts focused on testing potential supply chain management solutions and technological advances outside of a live operation, which it noted will enhance accuracy, sustainability, and improve implementation speeds for Kenco’s shipper customers.
“We are dedicated to leading the digital transformation of the supply chain,” said Denis Reilly, President and CEO, Kenco Logistics Services, in a statement. “The Innovation Lab is one example of our commitment to providing well-vetted cutting-edge technologies to our customers, allowing them to achieve improved performance and enhanced supply chain value.”
In an interview, Kristi Montgomery, VP Innovation-R&D, Kenco Logistics, said that various factors led to this development, including: driving market forces of consumer demand; customer needs for transformational supply chain change; and the explosion of emerging technologies that offer potential value, which she noted all contributed to the need to truly cut through the hype and test solutions for proven value to Kenco’s customers.
“Even a small pilot of emerging technology, while it offers significant promises to improve operations, can be disruptive in today’s fast-paced logistics space and meeting end customer expectations and service level agreements is critical to our client base,” she explained. “This new innovation test lab allows us to simulate the exact client environment in a real, physical, working warehouse space and test the processes and technologies that are of greatest interest or offer the most significant promise of transformation for our client. The ability to prove value before significant investment is the key benefit to our clients.”
Looking ahead, Montgomery said the lab will continue to expand and grow as Kenco adds vendor technologies, partners with key systems providers such as WMS and TMS companies, and engineers new process solutions for our clients.
What’s more, she said that Kenco expects to identify significant new opportunities in building an ecosystem of various mature providers, startups, client teams, consultants, and academia as it seeks to transform the supply chain to offer customer value, competitive advantage, and market impact.
Kenco said that the initial technologies that will be brought into the new warehouse space include: NextShift Robotics, a fundamentally unique autonomous mobile robotics solution; Stocked Robotics, a provider of a cloud-based AI platform and software suite that transforms existing manual fleets of material handling vehicles into autonomous swarms; LogistiVIEW, an AI and vision-driven picking software for smart glasses; and WMS software like JDA and HighJump.
About the AuthorJeff Berman, Group News Editor Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. Contact Jeff Berman
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