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Visionary 3PL Quiet Logistics Builds Business on Kiva Systems

Friday, January 16, 2009

WOBURN, MA — Kiva Systems (www.kivasystems.com), a developer of breakthrough robotic solutions for automating order fulfillment, today announced that Quiet Logistics is installing a Kiva Mobile Fulfillment System as the foundation of its service offerings. Quiet Logistics, an innovative third party logistics (3PL) provider, will use the Kiva solution to deliver order fulfillment, returns processing and value-added services for a wide spectrum of customers.

Quiet Logistics is the first 3PL to embrace the Kiva solution. As an industry, 3PLs have been slow to adopt traditional automation because customer contracts come and go, product mixes change frequently, and design, installation, integration and ramp times can take years. When these factors are combined with the capital expenditures required for fixed conveyor, carousel and sortation equipment, it is not surprising that major automation installations for 3PL order fulfillment are rare. In contrast with traditional automation, the Kiva solution is flexible and adaptive, allowing Quiet Logistics to expand capacity rapidly when necessary, use the same equipment across a dynamic customer base, and only invest in the equipment they need when they need it. The Kiva solution integrates tightly with Quiet Logistics' COMPLETEwmsT and real-time reporting dashboard to deliver an innovative "One Touch" fulfillment service.

"We have been implementing warehousing technology for more than 20 years, and Kiva has the only practical automated solution that supports the diversity of pick-pack-ship operations we run," said Bruce Welty, founder and CEO of Quiet Logistics. "Kiva is the first automation approach we'd be willing to bet our business on. Kiva's innovation immediately cuts hard costs, increases throughput and improves service levels to give us, and more importantly, our customers a tremendous competitive advantage."

Kiva's approach to order fulfillment uses hundreds of mobile robotic drive units that bring inventory on movable shelves 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. What's more, because all the system components are mobile and modular, a Kiva-equipped distribution center has unprecedented flexibility when adding new products or expanding throughput-without disrupting ongoing operations.

"3PLs are faced with serious business challenges because they serve customers with widely differing product and service requirements which traditional bolted-down automation cannot support," said Mick Mountz, founder and CEO of Kiva Systems. "Quiet Logistics is a visionary 3PL using technology to deliver highly differentiated customer service. They are translating Kiva's benefits into a strategic 3PL advantage."

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