Harder, better, faster, stronger – how Bastian Solutions helped PUMA revolutionize their automated warehouse system

Harder, better, faster, stronger – how Bastian Solutions helped PUMA revolutionize their automated warehouse system

As a result of its rapidly increasing ecommerce business in North America, PUMA found themselves quickly outgrowing their sole U.S ecommerce distribution center in Torrance, California. The solution to this problem was easy – build a new distribution center. While in theory this was a relatively easy task and decision, Puma had two major priorities, namely  to decrease order cycle time while also increasing the company’s reach to the east coast. To achieve this, Puma turned to its long-time partner Bastian Solutions to help plan, strategize and integrate a new facility and automated warehouse system in Indianapolis, Indiana.

The new Indianapolis facility features new innovations like the AutoStore Black Line and in-line packing automation and provides 10x more capacity and is 20% faster than Puma’s California facility, thus ensuring that the company can comfortably meet peak season demands while also having plenty of room for further growth. The Indiana distribution center boasts an AutoStore goods-to-person automated order picking system – and this was in fact in the largest AutoStore grid in North America at the time of construction (June 2020) as well as some 175 Black Line robots, 305,000 bin locations, ConveyorPort, CarouselPort, and RelayPort pick & replenishment stations.

Speaking at the launch of the distribution center, Bob Philion, President & CEO PUMA North America, declared “In our business it’s innovate or die. It sounds brutal but I really feel like you’re either moving forward and using technology and automation and innovation to get better or you’re going backwards.”

Since the distribution center opened its doors in June 2020, Pums’s order fulfillment cycle has improved from 8 days to 2 days while the facility capacity increased tenfold to meet growing U.S. demand.  The distribution center currently holds 5.5 million units of inventory with 45,000 SKUs with a 25% increase in density for outbound trucks due to right-sized packaging that decreases empty space in boxes. In the first year since opening, Puma shipped over 1 million units  per month with expectations to double in first year and increased storage and throughput with AutoStore Black Line’s larger bin size, faster robots and the RelayPort’s faster bin presentation.  Bastian Solutions are also particularly proud of their AutoStore goods to person system which they claim increases order picking efficiency by decreasing time spent walking and increasing accuracy with the user-friendly interface

One of the most noteworthy aspects of the project is the fact that the facility opened in June 2020, on-time and on-budget despite the unique challenges caused by COVID-19. These challenges included increased stay at home orders, new safety protocols, and supply chain issues which threatened to increase the budget and delay opening. In addition, an unexpected surge in online orders from March 2020 brought PUMA’s business to peak-season levels, making the need for the new facility even greater.

To learn more about the project listen to the podcast here