The Middle East region has been faring well in terms of transportation and logistical efficiencies and performance on the global scale with its logistics market set to reach $66.3 billion by the end of 2020, according to a new report.
The report has been released by Swisslog Middle East, a global leader in robotic, data-driven and flexible automated solutions, ahead of Materials Handling Middle East, the region’s dedicated trade show for warehousing, intralogistics and supply chain solutions.
Running from September 3 to 5 at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), the 10th edition of the biennial event will welcome more than 120 exhibitors from 20 countries.
Over the years, the event has evolved into a futuristic showcase of robotics and automation for its 2019 edition, as the 4th Industrial Revolution, or Industry 4.0, continues to reshape the region’s industrial landscape.
It will put spotlight on the latest automated solutions designed to improve operational and cost efficiency, increase production capacity, accelerate customer service and boost competitiveness within a rapidly-evolving logistics sector.
During the event, Swisslog Middle East will introduce highly-efficient robotised storage and order processing solutions for small parts and pallets that integrates into existing buildings.
“Several businesses in the UAE and globally have benefitted immensely from logistics automation and, particularly in the Middle East, we are seeing increasing demand for automated logistics solutions in industries ranging from e-commerce and retail, to F&B and pharma,” remarked Alain Kaddoum, the General Manager of Swisslog Middle East.
“While automated picking and packing has been around for a while, the next wave of change is being brought about by robotics. A warehouse that deploys robots reduces costs significantly while boosting efficiency,” he stated.
“AutoStore, for example, uses robots and bins to quickly process small parts orders and provides better use of available space than any other automated system in the market. Each robot is extremely energy efficient, using just 0.1 kW of energy per hour – six robots use the same energy as a toaster,” added Kaddoum.
Swisslog will also use Materials Handling Middle East as a platform to introduce CarryPick, a flexible and modular AGV-based storage and order picking system designed for multi-channel intralogistics that can fulfil 20 orders simultaneously.
On top of robotics, Kaddoum forecasts that digital transformation will majorly disrupt industry streams such as inventory management, cargo loading, order picking, and real-time monitoring of stocks.
“Technology is and will continue to be a truly disruptive force in how the modern supply chain is shaped, defined, and explored. From basic improvements like streamlining operations and increasing process efficiency to fully automating delivery trucks, technology is enabling much smarter and simpler supply chain management,” he said.
“In the future, companies will leverage new and innovative technologies to create a self-orchestrated supply chain and previously unimaginable efficiencies.”
With the World Bank’s 2018 Logistics Performance Index ranking the UAE 13th out of 160 countries, outstripping Canada, France, Finland, Denmark and Australia, the 2019 edition of Materials Handling Middle East is must-attend event for regional heavyweights and international players eager to increase their foothold in a super-competitive global marketplace.
To tap into the soaring demand for automation in the Middle East, Ancra Systems, a Netherlands-based specialist in automatic truck loading and unloading systems, is making its Materials Handling Middle East debut with an Automated Truck / Container Loading and Unloading Solution (ATLS) designed for a wide range of industries., said the event organisers Messe Frankfurt Middle East.
Automation is now a key driver for the full spectrum of industries, including ecommerce. The UAE’s e-commerce sector alone is currently worth US$17.8 billion, representing 45.6 per cent of the total value of the Middle East’s e-commerce market, according to a Fitch Solutions report.
“We have customers all over the world, but we want to extend our market in the Middle East and Saudi Arabia. All industries represent potential customers for us and Materials Handling Middle East is a conduit to target the beverage industry, FMCG, cold storage, automotive and chemicals,” said Ancra Systems spokesperson Fenghua Folmer.
The frenetic pace of change across the sector means the 2019 edition is shaping up to be the most highly-anticipated instalment in the event’s history, it stated.
“Digital transformation in warehousing intralogistics and the supply chain is in overdrive and we’ve sought to create the best platform for the early adopters and major disruptors to display services and solutions that will undoubtedly improve productivity, efficiency and more across warehousing, intralogistics and supply chain,” said Simon Mellor, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East.
“Visitors to this year’s event will get a complete overview of logistics today and tomorrow, including the sector’s role as a gateway to the future of commerce – both offline and online.”
Running alongside Materials Handling Middle East 2019 will be a series of educational sessions and seminars along with presentations around key strategies, policies and trends in supply chain management and logistics.
Elsewhere, the Forklift Operator of the Year competition will return, featuring UAE’s most skilled Forklift drivers who will be judged on their ability to safely and efficiently manoeuvre electric forklift machinery in tight and narrow spaces.