AutoStore Stress Tests Challenging Supply Chain Environments
AutoStore Innovation Hub is located in Karmøy, Norway and is dedicated to
testing and replicating diverse in-store and warehouse environments.
As the suppliers of robotic storage and fulfillment technology for Puma, Gucci,
Best Buy and many other global brands, AutoStore is experiencing continued
growth in revenue and clients. The robotics company has therefore sought to
create a testing facility that can allow for faster fitting of automated systems
for its clients in order to keep up with order demand.
Built in just seven months, the facility is fitted with a combination of robotic
technology and infrastructure for supply chain and retail facilities that cannot
be found anywhere else in the world. The Hub will be able to test the solutions
that are developed for global retailers and their store and warehouse
The facility’s environment can also be adjusted to allow the robots to be tested
in both hot and cold conditions, analyzing how the oxygen level changes when
goods are stacked within storage systems. The Hub also simulates earthquakes to
see how warehouse and store technology would respond to potentially harmful
situations, as well as a number of other functions.
“We identified the need to test solutions under a number of different
situations, but we could not set up a test center for cold environments, one for
heat, and at the same time one for a modern store solution, one for medical
storage and so on. Therefore, we set up a center where we could simulate
different situations and needs. This agile approach offers our clients a
competitive market advantage, and places them at the heart of new innovations
within the sector that can propel them forwards,” said Karl Johan Lier, CEO of
“Within the robotic technology industry, we do not have time to let the
processes drag on. As a technology company, we must identify needs, and together
with our partners and customers develop good solutions that can work
immediately. We live in a time of exponential development in most areas, and
then we must be able to develop solutions that are not outdated when they are
used,” Lier continued.
Micro-fulfillment is coming
represents one of the biggest challenges for the retail industry. If a company
does not have the item immediately, the consumer will either buy it somewhere
else or another product altogether. Handling consumables and groceries from
regional distribution centers do not meet the order fulfillment needs and
expectations of today, giving room to automation systems that can.
Lier predicts that globally there will be major changes in the way stores,
chains, shopping centers and online shopping is set up and organized. Stores,
transports, warehouses and every aspect of logistics will be connected in
completely new ways.
“The needs will vary from store to store, and industry to industry. Our
flexibility must enable the brands to streamline operations in line with their
specific needs, and to achieve this we must constantly test and develop new
solutions. The AutoStore Innovation hub will play an important role here,” says
AutoStore has set up its automation technology systems in warehouses all over