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Saks to use robotic solution from Kiva Systems


New York City Saks has launched a 30-month initiative to convert its fulfillment center in Aberdeen, Md., from manual to automated operations. The department store retailer has purchased a mobile-robotic solution from Kiva Systems, Woburn, Mass., a developer of mobile-robotic solutions that automate order fulfillment and warehousing operations.

“Given the growth of our Saks Direct business, and our need to support critical store initiatives, this the right time for us to invest in automation,” said Michael Rodgers, executive VP service operations and CIO at Saks. “The Kiva solution is a terrific option that can more than double productivity of our operations while also offering the flexibility we need to support our multichannel, multibrand fulfillment strategy well into the future.”

Kiva’s approach to order fulfillment uses hundreds of mobile robotic drive units that bring inventory directly to workers, allowing easy and efficient access to all inventory items at all times. Elimination of operator walking and waiting enables worker productivity that is two to four times higher than with other automated systems, according to Kiva. All the system components are mobile and modular.

Saks operates 53 Saks Fifth Avenue stores, 55 Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH stores and, its direct-to-consumer Web site.

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