VIDEO: DB Schenker opens record-breaking airfreight facility

By Damian Brett

DB Schenker has opened its most expensive facility to date: a €101m automated hub catering for the high-speed logistics sector.

The forwarder said that the Red Lion warehouse in Singapore is the single largest investment in any site globally in Schenker’s corporate history.

The combined airfreight and contract logistics hub is located in the Airport Logistics Park of Singapore (ALPS) at Changi Airport.

Jochen Thewes, DB Schenker’s chief executive, said: “DB Schenker further strengthens its position among the world’s leading logistic service providers for the Asia Pacific (APAC) region.

“Our new logistics hub makes us even faster and more reliable for our customers. The record investment in Red Lion marks an unparalleled milestone for our corporate history of almost 150 years. We are happy and proud to reinforce our commitment to Singapore as the heart of our logistics operations in Asia.”

The facility measures 51,400 sq m over five floors and has a warehouse management system with a synchronised IT platform.

The forwarder reckons this technology will increase productivity by up to 100% compared to manual processes, and reduce lead times for customers by 40% compared to non-integrated (combined contract/airfreight) facilities. 

Incoming freight is processed through a ball deck, which increases speed and eases handling. Pallet lifters then move freight to the automated warehouse with very narrow aisles to optimise capacity. The multi-shuttle and carton live storage systems are complemented by goods-to-person and pick-to-light technologies, conveyor systems, and automated guided vehicles.

Red Lion is also the first warehouse to offer an in-house designed robotic labeling system, which utilises 3D-vision technology and three robotic arms to apply labels in multiple languages on products of varying sizes, shapes, and configurations.

David Christmas, APAC contract logistics board member at DB Schenker, added: “Our new warehouse is a record-breaking facility full of technological and digital innovations. It is designed to serve customers with requirements for short lead times and high throughput. Our robotics will revolutionise product labelling. With our automation novelties, we are paving the way for our continuous journey in contract logistics toward a fully digital supply chain.”

The building also recognises Schenker’s commitment to promote sustainable development and environmental protection — 1,440 photovoltaic solar panels, along with other sustainability features, enable energy savings of 34%.

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Damian Brett

Damian Brett
I have been writing about the freight and logistics industry since 2007 when I joined International Freighting Weekly to cover the shipping sector. After a stint in PR, I have gone on to work for Containerisation International and Lloyds List - where I was editor of container shipping - before joining Air Cargo News in 2015. Contact me on [email protected]