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Rise of robots coming for DHL’s warehouses

A rise of the robots is on the way for DHL in Australia with 1000 new bots being rolled out in warehouses as part of a $150 million program to bolster efficiencies and ESG commitments. 

On Monday, (14 November 2022) DHL Supply Chain announced it was investing in warehouse robotics solutions and automation to support faster delivery to customers, improve operational efficiency and reduce employee workloads.

The robots hitting DHL warehouses

DHL Supply Chain’s investment includes:

  • Deployment of Assisted Picking Robots in a multi-customer environment
  • State-of-the-art picking platform, which increases storage density and order processing
  • Goods-to-Person robots to support teams to pack more customer orders
  • An Automated inventory management robot
  • Point-to-point picking robots

DHL says the investment in the technology will help go some way to reducing supply chain pressures being faced by customers. 

The company says it’s the largest investment in robotics by DHL Supply Chain across Asia-Pacific. 

“This investment in robotics will provide more resilient, flexible, and scalable supply chain solutions to our customers, who will be better equipped to service their own customers independent of the sector in which they operate,” said Steve Thompsett, Chief Executive Officer, Australia and New Zealand, DHL Supply Chain. 

More robots destined for warehouse floors

In the US, Boston Dynamics and DHL have been working over several years on a “Stretch robot” for autonomous trailer unloading. 

Elsewhere in the supply chain robotics movement, Agility Robotics is developing a two-legged walking robot, Digit v2, that can fulfil truck and trailer unloading tasks. 

Fox Robotics has developed robotic fork-lift trucks to unload trailers autonomously, which DHL has adopted in the US. The company recently closed out a $20 million USD funding round led by BMW i Ventures attracting new investors Zebra Technologies and Japan Airlines among others. 

Mr Thompsett says its investment strengthens to robotics in the Asia-Pacific firms the company’s commitment to ESG.  

“This investment has been made with three bottom lines in mind, and deepens DHL’s overarching commitments to environmental, social, and governance goals,” he said. 

“For example, one of the robotic picking systems we are deploying uses the energy of a standard household toaster.” 

DHL Supply Chain says it “is on track” to meet the ambitious long-term goal of reducing all logistics-related emissions to zero by 2050.



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