BEUMER COMPLETES MODERNIZATION AND EXPANSION OF L.L.BEAN DISTRIBUTION CENTER
BEUMER Group has successfully completed a nine-month modernization project at L.L.Bean’s Freeport, ME distribution center. BEUMER’s ongoing relationship with L.L.Bean includes providing maintenance, IT and operational training and customer service support for the upgraded packing sorter.
Outdoor retailer L.L.Bean, best known for its legendary customer service and high-quality gear and apparel that help to further people’s enjoyment of the outdoors, engaged BEUMER for the modernization and expansion project with a goal to increase order capacity and maximize system capabilities and prepare for future growth.
“L.L.Bean wanted to maximize their facility rather than expanding into other real estate and other parts of the country,” said Bill Fredrikis, BEUMER Logistics Service Manager. “Through this project they were able to increase their capacity from approximately 18,000 units per hour to nearly 37,000 units per hour.”
Installed in the mid-1990s, the existing operating system experienced delays and shutdowns due to operational limitations. BEUMER’s approach centered largely on improving the architecture of the packing sorter’s control system.
“We gutted the control system and reconfigured the entire electromechanical layout of the system to provide four virtual sorters built into one,” continued Fredrikis. “We transformed a pre- and secondary sort system into a four-virtual-sorter system with large compartmental chutes.”
In addition to greater sort capacity, the upgrade improved the work environment for L.L.Bean operators. New workstations, for example, provide a better view of the packing chutes, allowing operators to quickly observe and handle the packout process quickly and efficiently.
“Our transformation over the last few years has really extended the life of this facility. It’s allowed us to, essentially, double the capacity of this facility and do it cost-effectively,” noted Wayne Steele, L.L.Bean Director of Fulfilment & Logistics.
As the Maine-based retailer plans for the future, L.L.Bean and BEUMER Group continue to collaborate on future upgrades to maximize sorter system capabilities. To learn more about this modernization project and watch how the upgraded system has increased capacity, visit: us.beumergroup.com/ll-bean