GXO Logistics Pilots KNAPP Robotic Arm for Apparel E-Commerce Logistics

Netherlands site to pilot Pick-it-Easy system for GXO fashion e-commerce customer, with plans to expand.


The Pick-it-Easy system uses AI from Covariant to improve its performance.
In the first test of KNAPP's Pick-it-Easy system for automated pocket induction for apparel, GXO Logistics is piloting robotic picking for a customer in the Netherlands.

GXO Logistics Inc. today announced that it is conducting a pilot of a robotic picking system at its fashion e-commerce warehouse in Tilburg, the Netherlands. The Greenwich, Conn.-based contract logistics provider is piloting KNAPP AG's Pick-it-Easy Robot station for one of its global customers. The companies said it is the first application of KNAPP's technology for automated pocket induction for apparel logistics.

“As a leader in logistics innovation, we’re constantly exploring automation that can transform distribution and order fulfilment processes,” stated Sandeep Sakharkar, chief information officer at GXO. “The successful launch of the Tilburg pilot has allowed us to ensure that our customers get the greatest benefit and value from this technology.”

GXO Logistics claimed to be “the world’s largest pure-play contract logistics provider” with a total of 208 million sq. ft. of warehouse space. Despite its market leadership, the company said it holds only 5% of the fast-growing $130 billion potential addressable logistics market in Europe and North America. GXO spun off from XPO Logistics and launched on the New York Stock Exchange last month.

KNAPP Pick-it-Easy applies AI vision

KNAPP's system uses artificial intelligence-based vision to recognize each product. Pick-it-Easy can identify the optimal gripping point and gripping speed, while the arm places items into a pocket conveyor for sorting, grouping, and routing to packing stations.

The robotic picking system addresses the unique logistics challenges presented by the apparel industry, given the vast range of product sizes, shapes, textures, weights, and packaging, according to the companies

“The adaptability demonstrated by our Pick-it-Easy Robot is proving up to the challenge of complex e-commerce warehouse environments,” said Markus Posch, product manager for robot systems at Kennesaw, Ga.-based KNAPP. “We’re excited to build on our milestone collaboration with GXO within the fashion sector.”

After the successful implementation of the first KNAPP Pick-it-Easy Robot is complete, GXO plans to expand its use of technology in Tilburg with an additional four robots.

KNAPP's Pick-it-Easy Robot addresses logistics challenges.

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The Pick-it-Easy system uses AI from Covariant to improve its performance.

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