Investment of 6.5 million Euros in state-of the art technology at the Güglingen site
Right on schedule: AFRISO can move into its new logistics centre in the ‘Lüssen’ industrial park, just over a year after the groundbreaking ceremony. At the headquarters in Güglingen, the company has created the optimum conditions for even faster and more efficient processes for packaging, storage and shipping of its products. AFRISO has invested around 6.5 million Euros in the new building, which also meets high ecological standards. The relocation of the logistics processes will free up space that can be used for the optimisation and redesign of the production areas, for example, for the expansion of the in-house plastic injection moulding shop.
The scope of the expansion is impressive: The warehousing and logistics areas have increased from approximately 1,500m2 to 3,750m2. Around 1,000m2 of additional office space are available in a two-storey extension. The storage capacity is growing even more: The number of available pallet spaces almost triples from 1,200 to over 3,500.
Digitisation of all processes
“This expansion goes hand in hand with consistent digitisation for lean and efficient processes. The SAP ERP system that is used across the entire corporation serves as a basis for this. In conjunction with specifically developed warehouse software, a high-performance and future-oriented system and process environment was created that meets the most modern requirements,” explains Tobias Kiefer, who defined the new processes together with logistics manager Benedikt Wohlmuth. Numerous measures such as ‘multi-order picking’, paperless logistics processing and consistent route optimisation contribute to sustainable cost and time savings.
State-of-the-art shelving systems and automated vertical lift systems for small parts accelerate daily processes. Warehouse terminals guide the employees through the logistics centre, and ‘pick-by-light’ supports order picking. The additional warehouse capacities also make it possible to relocate various activities such as final packaging or customer-specific labelling from production to logistics. As a result, AFRISO expects increases in productivity in production as well.
Distribution centre for national and international markets
As a distribution centre, the new building is used to ship AFRISO products all over the world. The new logistics and service centre operates in dual-shift operation in order to fully meet the high demands of national and international customers for short and reliable delivery times. The range currently comprises more than 25,000 products. More than 3,000 of them are on stock; a total of more than 1,500,000 individual devices are available from stock. With the new building, rented external warehousing space for semi-finished products can be closed, costly transport infrastructure is no longer needed – a great benefit also for the environment.
Environmental aspects of the new building planned by architect Andreas Lippeck took centre stage: The photovoltaic system installed on the roof with over 1,200 modules and an area of 2,078m2 makes a significant contribution to the energy supply of the logistics centre. Part of the electricity generated in this way can be reused for the new lithium-ion battery technology of the forklift trucks. The heating system is a concrete core-activated system in the floor slab which excels with high efficiency and low energy consumption.
Considerably improved labour conditions
In the annex, AFRISO Service is moving into new premises with a workshop; it benefits from considerably improved working conditions, ‘short distances’ and a doubled floor space. As a result, the company expects a capacity increase of up to 10% by the end of 2022. In addition, health protection is given even greater consideration with new safety concepts and modern extraction systems for hygienically clean indoor air. AFRISO hand-held measuring instruments used by HVAC specialists and chimney sweeps will be sent to the new service centre for maintenance or repair. In addition, investments were made in state-of-the-art testing equipment. The on-site service at the customers’ is also coordinated in this area. The service will offer even more competent technical advice and support for all customers in the future.
Commitment to the site
The managing directors Elmar and Jürgen Fritz see the new building and the associated investment as a clear commitment to the region and to Germany as a business location. “We will gradually expand the production of high-quality equipment for domestic technology over the long term at the German locations, especially in Güglingen,” emphasises Elmar Fritz.