23.05.2022  |  Branchenyt

Unil partners with Swisslog for its automated high-bay warehouse

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Unil AS has selected Swisslog as partner for the development of the company's automated high-bay warehouse in Våler, Norway. The expanded warehouse facility will be one of the largest warehouses in the Nordic region.

Unil, owned by the NorgesGruppen grocery chain, is responsible for development, quality assurance, import, purchasing, warehousing and marketing of NorgesGruppen's own brand portfolio of circa 4,000 products. Unil has now commissioned Swisslog to more than double the size of its automated warehouse, in order to meet NorgesGruppen's rapid growth. The project is one example of the market's high demand for automation solutions needed to handle increased demand quickly and efficiently.

"The new warehouse gives us a competitive advantage because it gives us a low handling cost and fast and reliable pallet handling. It will likely be one of the Nordic region's largest high-bay warehouses and it will be able to  meet NorgesGruppen’s needs for many years,” according to Jarle Hagen, Supply Chain Manager at Unil.

The Våler facility is a fully automated handling solution for both dry and frozen goods. Frozen goods automation is one of Swisslog's strengths, with more than 250 projects completed worldwide. Unil handles a large volume of goods that are deep-frozen down to -25 degrees and handled at high density in a compact, space-saving facility. The result is fast, economical and accurate handling, with significant energy savings.

Swisslog's delivery includes 16 new Vectura stacker cranes and the conveyor system ProMove. After the expansion, the new facility will consist of a total of thirty-one 34-meter-high cranes and 105,500 pallet locations. The automated systems will be integrated and controlled by Swisslog’s software SynQ WMS. The facility provides Unil a low cost per handled pallet and a good capacity to be able to secure NorgesGruppen’s delivery capacity. At full operation, a total of over one million pallets will be handled annually.

"We’ve had positive experiences working with Swisslog in the past, so the choice of partner was not particularly difficult. We are very satisfied in terms of both delivery and service," says Jarle Hagen.

The new expansion of the crane warehouse should be ready summer 2022 and the new automation is planned to be in full operation mid-2023. The total budget for the expansion is 400 million Norwegian kroner.

"It is a very exciting project and an honor to be able to continue working together with Unil and contribute to the company's continued competitiveness. Completing an expansion while the warehouse is fully operational is also a challenge, but this is something that our skilled employees at Swisslog are used to handle," says Mari Låtun Stebekk, Sales Manager for integrated solutions at Swisslog.

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