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Sentury Tire: Passion for benefit


“I forced my people to accept the Cimcorp concept,” Qin Long, Chairman of Sentury Tire, smiles. “It is not a huge investment compared to those we have to make in process machinery and the use of labor. I can see only benefits.”


Embracing automation to the fullest — 18


Cimcorp sets up base in the U.S. — 8


BY Masatoshi Wakabayashi • PHOTO BY Johanna Sjövall

Redeeming our promises


ur society, business, and technology are changing dynamically. People are always looking for competitive and efficient ways to improve themselves for a promising future. We, at Cimcorp, are no exception to this. We believe it’s important to stay competitive and to keep improving ourselves in order to be a reliable partner for our customers and to be an important part of our society. We’re only happy if our solutions and delivered systems make our customers happy. As the pioneers of automated robotic solutions for intralogistics, Cimcorp’s mission is to apply our expertise and passion to simplify customers’ material flows for the best output. Quite simply, we’re here for our customers. Understanding our customers’ businesses and operations is the key to being a good partner. Our 40 years of industry experience, knowledge acquired through projects and our openness to explore new ideas make us experts in logistics and automation. While we listen to customers to understand their plan, we often challenge them with our recommended solutions and open the discussion further to reach better conclusions. The sales process is where you plan your future with us and we make sure that it is an experience you enjoy. Our professionals design the whole intralogistics system, software control, and equipment hardware. Developing and manufacturing ‘robots’ remains our key technology. However, the development of software for warehouse control systems (WCS) and manufacturing execution systems (MES) has taken a larger role than before because customers are looking for optimal solutions for their operations as a whole. We strive to improve our technical capabilities in all areas to better serve our customers. We are a manufacturer as well as a project house that delivers integrated systems. Our turnkey delivery includes the processes of designing, producing, testing, and completing on-site installation and commissioning. Experienced professionals for all processes work together as a ‘team’ and the process is continuously improved by insight received from the quality management system. Our post-sale service group and local partner network will serve you for the rest of the system’s life. I am confident that the Cimcorp team of passionate professionals will deliver the best system to satisfy your needs.

Masatoshi Wakabayashi CEO



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Contents — 1 / 2016

Redeeming our promises Editorial by our CEO, Masatoshi Wakabayashi

China’s Tire Tycoon



Automating Brownfields


Greetings from the North


L’Oréal making its mark in the U.S. with Cimcorp


Introducing revolutionary order fulfillment solution


Meet the man behind Sentury Tire’s evolution, Qin Long


About us We are the pioneers of automated robotic solutions for intralogistics. Albert Einstein once said: “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler.” We couldn’t agree more. Optimization is simplification and vice versa. With better factory or warehouse layout design, intelligent software, and innovative robotic solutions, we can get more out of less. Fewer components, increased efficiency. This is how we operate; we are the architects of intralogistics. For more than 30 years we have optimized our customers’ material flows in warehouses, distribution centers and tire manufacturing facilities. What drives us? Passion for optimized material flow.

More about us:


Office in Norcross brings us closer to the growing markets and customers in the U.S.

Enhancing the dairy industry one pick at a time

Tweet-Tweet Who to follow, what to tweet: our own curated list of best throwbacks in our network. Go tweet @CimcorpOy and @CimcorpNA!


Cimcorp’s dynamic duo reviews what we did with Kroger Dairy

Flow is a stakeholder magazine giving insight to the daily business and development of Cimcorp and its personnel. The papers and inks used are eco-friendly and produced responsibly. Source of addresses: Cimcorp’s marketing register. For subscriptions, please contact

A game for gentlemen For service engineer Peltomäki finding a rugby team was essential when leaving for yearlong secondment to Indonesia








Paula Ovaskainen

Jonne-Pekka Stenroos/Staart Lönnberg, Finland



IN THE PICTURE Qin Long was excited to follow the automation installation in March 2016 in his tire plant. The line was up and running two months ahead of the original date in June (small photo) and it made Qin Long want more, higher, and faster.



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Main Case

WRITTEN BY Paula Ovaskainen, Heidi Scott • PHOTOS BY David Richards

China’s Tire Tycoon As Chairman of Sentury Tire, the rapidly expanding Chinese manufacturer, Qin Long is a tire industry tycoon. He could also be described, with equal accuracy, as a typhoon. This is a man of immense confidence, acumen, and conviction who makes an unforgettable impression.


hen Qin Long established his first tire plant in Qingdao, China, in 2008 it was a totally manual operation. At that time it was conventional in Chinese tire production to have no automation. In the factory’s second phase of development during 2012-2013, however, Cimcorp’s green tire handling automation was considered. Qin Long had dreamed about such a system, so when Cimcorp first visited

to propose the idea of its Dream Factory solution, it seemed the match was predestined. “I thought: ‘That’s what I want!’,” explains Qin Long. The automation went ahead and resulted in an enormous efficiency boost for the Qingdao plant. Based on this positive experience in China, Qin Long decided to automate Sentury’s second plant – the Rayong plant in Thailand – from the very


China’s Tire Tycoon

beginning and, this time, on a bigger scale. At the Thai plant, it is not only the handling of PCR (passenger car radial) green tires from the tire-building machines to the curing presses that is automated – so is the sorting, palletizing, warehousing, and shipping of finished tires, with the use of Cimcorp’s monorail transfers and gantry robots. Qin Long explains: “After I had seen the efficiency increase in Qingdao, I immediately decided to use Cimcorp equipment in Thailand. Only the first line had been installed and was operational in Qingdao at that stage but, based on the trust I had in Cimcorp and the benefits I was witnessing, I decided to go ahead as soon as possible.” Faster, faster! Cimcorp was able to build, install, and commission the automated systems in Qingdao in record time. Within a year of receipt of Sentury Tire’s order, the first line was up and running. Cimcorp’s project team even speeded up the planned schedule, putting the lines into operation two months ahead of the original date. But even this is not fast enough for Qin Long; he wants implementation to proceed at an ever-faster pace. Why? “I have orders and I will lose the customers if I cannot deliver the tires,” he says. “They’ll go elsewhere! The faster I can get the production line up and running, the faster I will get the revenue and the profit.” The installation, commissioning, and start-up of Cimcorp’s largest ever project, the Sentury plant in Thailand – located about 100 miles outside of Bangkok – has therefore proceeded at breakneck speed. All six green tire automation lines were operational in spring 2016, along with the finished tire automation systems. Qin Long is a now a champion of automation, having witnessed its effect on overall plant utilization, up from 72



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make in process machinery and the use of labor. I can see only benefits.” Under the direction of Qin Long, Sentury Tire has grown very rapidly and has plans for yet more expansion. The company has announced the construction of a highly automated tire plant in the US with planned capacity of more than 12 million tires per year. Sentury’s management is currently searching for the ideal location and groundbreaking is scheduled for early in 2017. One of the key factors behind the efficiency and speed achieved by Sentury Tire is replication; the US plant will be a carbon copy of the Thai plant. With the manufacturing lines reproduced across the factories, installation and start-up is extremely fast. The systems can be installed in When Cimcorp first visited to propose steps, with the first line able the idea of its Dream Factory solution, to begin production just three it seemed the match was predestined. months after installation begins. The subsequent lines “That’s what I want!”, I thought. take just two weeks each, Qin Long allowing production to be up Chairman of Sentury Tire and running very quickly and enabling revenues to begin to flow in. There is no doubt that Qin Long has advantages. A huge quality improvement established some of the world’s most has been realized at the Qingdao plant; advanced tire plants. For him, it has also 99.67 percent of tires can now be released been a chance to change the old mindset, immediately to the next process step, the traditional management style that has whereas in the manual system the figure been ruling for decades. In 2015 China’s was 92 percent. State Council challenged Chinese companies to boost manufacturing and improve Passionate visionary efficiency as part of the ten-year ‘Made In the beginning, Qin Long was alone in in China 2025’ national plan. “By chance, his way of thinking at Sentury Tire. No and with Cimcorp’s help, I am several one else at management level believed years ahead,” says Qin Long. “I achieved in the idea of an automated factory. For two years ago what the Chinese governthem, the risk of failure was too high. As ment is now asking other companies to the largest owner of the company, however, Qin Long had great influence. “I do.” Not surprising, then, that this comforced my people to accept the Cimcorp pelling character was recently recognized concept,” he smiles. In his opinion, it with an entrepreneurship award in the was not such a big risk: “It is not a huge city of Qingdao.  investment compared to those we have to percent to 96.5 percent in the Qingdao plant. It is not just Cimcorp’s automated handling and control of the material flow that makes the difference; it is the combination of this automation, the manufacturing execution system (MES), and modern process equipment. However, Qin Long believes that Cimcorp’s systems play the major role in successfully reaping the full benefits: “Dream Factory is the driving force,” he says. “Currently we can produce 3,800 more tires a day than if our operations were manual. Daily production is around 15,000 tires.” In addition to increased efficiency and expanded capacity, there are other

Cimcorp’s scope of supply


Quality improvement:


15k Daily production:


Scan the code to watch a short video about Sentury Tires’ views on the future

In January 2014, Sentury Tire commissioned Cimcorp to deliver a turnkey material handling solution for PCR green tires for its plant in Qingdao, China. The system was installed in stages, with operation beginning in October 2014 and installation completed by March 2015. The automation is part of Cimcorp’s Dream Factory solution and takes care of green tire handling from the tire-building machines to the curing presses. The solution includes three independent automation lines, each consisting of electric monorail systems for unloading tire-building machines and transferring green tires to the curing buffers; green tire buffers with gantry robot; spotting stations; and electric monorail systems for press delivery. The material flow is controlled by Cimcorp WCS (Warehouse Control Software). With 100% availability of green tires at the curing presses, utilization of the most valuable process machinery is optimized. Installation of Dream Factory at Sentury Tire’s new plant in Rayong, Thailand, began in October 2015 and the first line went into production by the end of January 2016. Implementation has continued in stages, with completion in May 2016. The Cimcorp solution features six independent automation lines, each consisting of monorail systems for the unloading of the tire building machines and transfer of green tires to the curing buffers; green tire buffer storage; spotting stations; and monorail transfers for press delivery. The scope of supply also includes finished tire buffers and palletizing stations, rail guided vehicle (RGV) loops, stacker cranes in a high-bay warehouse and shipping buffers in the dispatch area. Again, the material flow is controlled by Cimcorp WCS, which integrates the various advanced technologies – robots, monorails, RGVs, stacker cranes, and pallet conveyors – into a seamless system. Dive deeper into Dream Factory





WRITTEN BY Laura Asendio, Paula Ovaskainen • PHOTOS BY Jeff Hardy, Johanna Uusitalo, Johanna Sjövall, Oona Andriasjan






Closer to customers — New office in the U.S.













Cimcorp has opened a new office in Norcross, Georgia, USA. The new office enables Cimcorp to provide greater support to North American clients and the growing warehouse and distribution market.

Located in an emerging business and technology hub, Cimcorp opened its U.S. office during the second quarter of 2016. The Atlanta location will provide Cimcorp’s sales and service team with a local home base in the Southeast U.S. market, which has a large projected growth for intralogistics, warehouse automation, and manufacturing. Cimcorp is looking to expand its sales and service activities to its customers in its target markets, including tire manufacturing, consumer packaged goods, food and beverage, and retail and e-commerce.



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“Due to its central location within a rapidly growing intralogistics market, ease of airport access, proximity to our major customers, and access to skilled labor, the Norcross area is an ideal location for Cimcorp,” says Rick Trigatti, North America president, Cimcorp. “The new office will allow us to better serve our U.S. customer base while providing us with expanded access to this growing market where we will be surrounded by customers, competitors, partners, and suppliers.” As well as being a manufacturer and integrator of pioneering material

handling systems for the tire industry, Cimcorp has developed unique robotic solutions for order fulfillment and storage that help manufacturers and distribution centers meet the challenge of managing multi-channel distribution within a complex and rapidly evolving multi-sales channel environment while optimizing material flow, increasing efficiencies, and improving their bottom lines. “We truly believe that our U.S. customers will value us being closer and being able to serve them better in sales and after sales issues,” said Rick Trigatti.

Experts to expand Atlanta office Bruce Bleikamp joined the new office as sales manager in June. He will look to expand Cimcorp USA’s sales and service activities to its customers in its target markets including consumer packaged goods, food and beverage, and retail and e-commerce.

Vesa Hakanen has transferred from Cimcorp’s headquarters in Ulvila, Finland to Atlanta to lead the new USA office as General Manager. In this role, he will oversee day-to-day operations as well as create and maintain budgets for the Atlanta branch.

Bleikamp, who has 25 years of experience in designing and implementing material handling solutions for distribution, e-commerce and manufacturing operations, has worked extensively with automated storage, conveyor, sortation, palletizing, and guided vehicle systems across a wide range of industries and applications. As a key part of the company’s warehouse systems sales team, Bleikamp will ensure Cimcorp’s new and existing customers receive the highest quality service during optimization of material flows in automated warehouses and distribution centers.

Hakanen has been a part of Cimcorp since 1998. Starting off as a software engineer, he progressively moved up into the manager role. Since 2009, he has been responsible for directing and coordinating activities involving sales of products and services; preparing budgets and approving budget expenditures; as well as planning and directing staffing, training, and performance evaluations to develop and control sales and service programs. Hakanen holds a Master of Science in Technology degree from Tampere University of Technology.





Other new appointments at Cimcorp:


HEIKKI MALMI Sales Manager

TIMO RAJAKANGAS Manager, System Planning

TAPIO KAARTINEN Product Manager, Subsystems

SARI VALONEN Human Resources Manager

RISTO SAKKI Manager, Projects and Engineering, Customer Support

LORI VAUGHAN Marketing Communications Manager

DOMINIK KLOPFER Manager, Information Technology



WRITTEN BY Paula Ovaskainen, Laura Asendio, Oona Andriasjan • PHOTOS BY Matti Immonen, Jeff Hardy

Cimcorp to automate layer picking in Sazerac’s new distribution center Development of Cimcorp+ series continues

New eco-friendly solutions RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT •

Cimcorp+ is the latest generation of products from Cimcorp that provides the answer to the sustainability requirements of the industrial world today. Soon there will be new family members in the range to join the energy-efficient Cimcorp+ robots that are already on the market, as several other Cimcorp products are undergoing an upgrade process. Gantry-type robots are the key components in Cimcorp’s automatic material handling systems, but total solutions often require other devices as well. Over the years, Cimcorp has developed special handling equipment such as orientation devices, stackers and destackers for the tire industry, as well as tote stackers and destackers for order fulfillment solutions.



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Now all of these special products are under careful review and the development of the next generation has begun. The aim is to create solutions that are faster, lighter, and more environmentally friendly. Energy savings, carbon footprint reduction, recyclability, and sustainability have become key values in industry today and Cimcorp+ is our response to feedback from our customers. All these solutions are being designed as independent system components, each including the handling device, controller, and infeed and outfeed conveyors. In this way, they can be operated independently and easily integrated into bigger systems. This will reduce the time needed for the engineering, production, and installation of the equipment.

NEW BUSINESS • Cimcorp is istalling its Layer Pick system in The Glenmore Distillery’s new, revolutionary distribution center in Ownesbury, Kentucky, USA. The newly completed 223,000 square-foot distribution center is a part of parent company Sazerac’s $71 million investment in the state of Kentucky.

“We’re pleased our business has grown enough to support such a highly advanced distribution center,” says Chris Stout, plant general manager, The Glenmore Distillery. “We look forward to being able to serve our customers in a more efficient manner and being prepared for potential future growth.” Rick Trigatti, North America president, Cimcorp, said, “Our innovative layer pick solution cuts handling costs and improves profitability in exceedingly competitive markets. We are excited to start this new chapter with Sazerac by supplying a unique solution to help them reach their goal of streamlining their operation at The Glenmore Distillery while improving overall quality, reliability, and accuracy.”





Cimcorp’s CSR is delivered through a self-regulated framework that is integrated within our business model and covers every organizational level and function to ensure ethical, responsible, and sustainable business practices. “We aim to benefit all our stake​holders, from employees to customers, as well as the communities in which we work,” explains Miia Vironen, Cimcorp’s Director of QHSE (Quality, Health, Safety & Environment). Corporate social responsibility consists of three core aspects – ecological, economic, and social sustainability. The values and benefits are all interrelated and work in synergy. Cimcorp’s CSR is embedded in our organizational structures and processes, as well as in our products. By ‘doing the right thing, at the right time, in the right way’, this commitment is reflected in the quality of Cimcorp’s solutions.


Taking corporate social responsibility (CSR) seriously, we aim to benefit our stakeholders through responsible and sustainable business practices. We are therefore delighted to have added occupational health and safety certification to the Cimcorp Management System.



Another healthy step forward in CSR

The most recent addition to the Cimcorp Management System is the occupational health and safety certification, OHSAS 18001. The purpose of the program is to manage and reduce potential risks, and to provide optimal welfare for Cimcorp’s employees in the factory, the offices, and at sites around the world. In addition to our internal auditors, who investigate and report on issues and observations, third-party auditors undertake annual check-ups, ensuring unbiased and up-to-date health and safety standards. Despite the newly acquired certification, Cimcorp has already been implementing these standards for some time. We provide health projects, safety walks, employee satisfaction surveys, risk assessments, and general occupational healthcare, demonstrating that health and safety matters involve constant adaptation to the changing environment, norms, and risks. 11

Case Review

WRITTEN BY Laura Asendio • PHOTOS BY Jeff Hardy

Fresh ideas for dairy order picking Cimcorp’s Distribution Systems Manager, Derek Rickard, and Warehouse Systems Applications Manager, Tom Pollard, are deeply immersed in the implementation and customization of automated systems for various industries. They have seen an increase in large dairy brands, including The Kroger Company (Kroger), looking to automate their facilities in order to overcome industry challenges. Flow Magazine caught up with Derek and Tom to ask them a few questions about these challenges; how automation can help companies combat their challenges; and their experience working on the Kroger implementation project.

What challenges do you see the dairy industry as a whole currently experiencing? RICKARD: “One of the major challenges facing the food and beverage industry is delivering exceptional quality and freshness to its customers, while meeting strict industry requirements and standards. This includes finding ways to prevent recalls, mitigate foodborne illnesses, and trace food and beverages from farm to fork to ensure consumer safety.”

What prompted Kroger to turn to Cimcorp’s robotics solutions for its new facility in Denver? RICKARD: “Kroger was looking for a solution to meet their objectives of faster picking, accuracy, and reliability, which would enable them to give their customers excellent standards of service. Kroger wanted a system that would reduce their operational costs, while ensuring customer orders would be picked and shipped quickly and accurately.



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Kroger was also looking to minimize their reliance on the human element to avoid possible injuries and work-related strains. They wanted their employees to stay healthier and happier because they could come to work each day without worrying about being hurt. Furthermore, the company wanted the new Mountain View Foods facility to meet the requirements of its zerowaste-to-landfill initiative, which began more than three years ago, in addition to conserving water and facility floor space and being energyefficient.” Why did Kroger select Cimcorp as its automation supplier? POLLARD: “After reviewing best practices from around the world, Kroger selected Cimcorp to help meet its goals and overcome the challenges of traditionally designed facilities. Additionally, Kroger favored our simplistic designs and long, successful track record in the industry.

Our automation solutions have been tested and implemented in 40 countries across five continents and are designed to reduce operating costs, ensure traceability, and improve efficiency—all qualities that Kroger wanted to achieve with its facility.” What results has Kroger experienced because of this implementation? POLLARD: “The Cimcorp MultiPick solution precisely controls the entire material flow of the facility and provides Kroger with rapid material handling, flexible use of space, easy cleaning, and improved labor savings. This end-to-end solution allows for the automatic operation to collect vast amounts of data and execute detailed analysis of both dispatch operations and production planning. This data provides a dairy with 100 percent traceability, an important factor for perishable dairy products and consumer safety.

Warehouse Systems Applications Manager TOM

Distribution Systems Manager


has more than 17 years of experience in the supply chain industry developing robotic order fulfillment systems.

has more than 25 years of experience in the supply chain industry.


Cimcorp’s solution for Kroger At Kroger they also reduced workers’ injury risks by incorporating an automated system and removing the need for workers to use long-handled hooks to pull 250-pound (113 kg) stacks of dairy cases onto the chain conveyor. Additionally, Kroger benefits from orders picked with 100 percent accuracy, at faster speeds, which results in shorter lead times, maximized product shelf life, and fresher products. Mountain View Foods is one of the first dairies in the U.S. to deploy robotic technology that enables packing, picking, and palletizing of crates in the cold storage areas entirely by automation. Kroger is seeing a dramatic difference between its traditional, manual facility and the Mountain View Foods’ automated system through increased efficiencies and rapid handling, reduced labor costs and errors, and product traceability. In addition to the benefits and streamlined operations that have already made a positive impact to Kroger’s bot-

tom line, the company has also received recognition for its innovative facility design and was named Dairy Foods 2015 Plant of the Year. Kroger plans to continue to expand its use of automation and has already begun assessing other facilities for consideration in 2016.” What successes can other dairy companies achieve by implementing a custom solution developed by Cimcorp? RICKARD: “Like Kroger, other dairy companies can improve their business through fast and efficient order picking, achieve 100 percent traceability and accuracy, and optimize their overall operations. Additional results can be attained as every system is built to meet that specific customer’s goals and objectives. Our solution can be implemented into existing facilities or brand new facilities so the possibilities are endless.”

• A comprehensive, end-to-end automated warehouse solution centered on MultiPick, a fully automated, robotic production storage, handling, and order processing system. • MultiPick can store up to 36,000 crates and is able to pick 32,000 crates per day. • The system includes a warehouse management system (WMS), robotic gantries, software modules, and an inter-platform communications system. • WMS controls order processing, gantry movements, stack transport, and storage facility data. • ControlLogix PLC manages the conveyors, stacking equipment palletizer, and strapping system.


Kroger Dairy’s new automated facility in action


Dream Factory

WRITTEN BY Lori Vaughan • PHOTOS BY Jeff Hardy, Tuisku Greis

Automating Brownfields Keeping the old — In with the new. Brownfields can be a challenge to automate, but it’s possible! Cimcorp’s Dream Factory solution fits both new and existing tire manufacturing facilities.


any tire makers strive to position their tire manufacturing plants close to the regions where tires will be sold. As a result of this strategy, there has been an increase in foreign tire manufacturing companies building new (Greenfield), highly automated plants in the United States. In order to remain competitive, the existing manufacturers in the U.S. are forced to automate their plants, which can be a much greater challenge given some of the building restrictions and existing plant layouts. This shift has made a big impact on the industry as a whole and manufacturers across the globe are looking towards automation to gain more market share. Cimcorp has developed and integrated innovative and efficient solutions for both new and existing tire factories. With the greater flexibility and versatility of automated guided vehicles (AGVs), newer islands of automation can be connected and adapted to the more challenging layouts found in Brownfield factories, providing a “factory of the future” within factories of the past. Overcoming Brownfield challenges Cimcorp sales manager, Don Heelis, explains the challenges of Brownfield sites: “The old plants were designed to a different set of criteria as compared to what the new plants are designed for today. The biggest challenge with Brownfields is that



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they were not built or designed to accommodate automation.” Many of the global tire factories were built in the 50s and 60s and the material handling requirements were planned around manual processes. These older plants required significant buffering areas for raw materials and work in process (WIP) because they were being manually accessed and manipulated by workers, which influenced how the plants were laid out. This meant that layouts were not streamlined based on the manufacturing process sequence and there was no integrated material flow to the factory, causing inefficiencies in production and operations. Additionally, as the demand for tires grew, tire facilities needed to expand and their expansions were based on what space was available on their existing properties or sites. Because of this, expansions were not laid out with the priority of having an efficient WIP material flow, not to mention the production layout. This presents a big challenge when trying to tie in traditional automation. New innovation sparks solution Typically, newer facilities are built with future growth plans and automation in mind. Over the last decade, Cimcorp has

designed and developed its Dream Factory solution for the tire industry. Within the solution, raw materials, compounds, components, green tires, and cured tires are transferred from one process phase to another by using AGVs, mobile robots, area and linear-type gantry robots, monorail transfers, and conveyors. The materials are stored and moved in and out of buffer storage areas utilizing gantry robot and highbay warehouse (HBW) technology. The entire material flow is controlled by the Cimcorp Warehouse Control System (WCS) that integrates individual system components into one comprehensive material handling solution. Cimcorp’s Manufacturing Execution System (MES) collects and traces production data, recipe management, and reporting. Individual tires have complete traceability through the whole process. Heelis draws a direct line to Cimcorp’s innovations for new factories and how this new innovation can be integrated into Brownfields in pieces, to improve the overall manufacturing processes in these legacy factories.

Old meets new: applying the technology “By automating new factories and developing modular automation solutions for clients’ Greenfield factories, we’ve recognized that we can take those same modules and apply them in different areas in existing Brownfield factories to solve their material handling problems. Think about each module as a Lego block, and by connecting them we can come up with new and innovative solutions,” says Heelis. To see all of the components of the solution and their functionality, the Dream Factory solution must be broken down into modules. At the start of the plant there is the raw material handling, component preparation, then there is tire building, green tire storage and retrieval, green tire curing, final finish, and then warehousing and order fulfillment. By breaking these down into small pieces, they can be inserted into the Brownfield factory in specific, isolated areas. Now that we have the individual modules inserted in the Brownfield factory, the question was how can we connect them together to make the factory’s complex, discontinuous layout work? We’ve found that if we used AGVs we can efficiently connect these modules together; we can design innovative and interesting solutions for any client and their individ-

Think about each module as a Lego block, and by connecting them we can come up with new and innovative solutions. Don Heelis Cimcorp Sales manager

ual layout. AGVs are very flexible, easy to install and program, which gives them the ability to move around most obstacles and barriers in the old Brownfield factories. Heelis explains, “You can try to connect the modules by using other means, but you quickly run into the Brownfield constraints of convoluted production flow, inconsistency of production equipment layout, low ceiling heights, varying column pitches, and numerous obstructions. The flexibility and adaptability of the AGV overcomes these challenges and creates the critical linkages necessary between the automation modules.” Reaping the benefits “New innovation and solutions are not only providing us with the results we need to meet our clients’ goals in new facilities, but also their existing factories. Tire manufacturers can see a high return on investment because they’re also keeping their overhead costs down by maximizing their current assets. We will continue to innovate and find more solutions to assist our clients in solving their material handling problems,” concludes Heelis.


Greetings from the North

WRITTEN BY Tanja Hovi • PHOTO BY Hannu RInne

Software specialist Hannu Rinne recalls his first photo expedition to Svalbard, Norway: ”A polar bear stirred from under a blue glacier tongue. It rolled in the snow, took a dip and went back to sleep. All of a sudden, a block of ice the size of a house crashed into the sea. The people in our group feared for the polar bear’s life. Luckily, we spotted it again. We took photos of the female bear in action from a rubber dinghy at a distance of only forty meters away and then we continued our trip. Everything was fine!”


76°58’N 15°47’E


13.7.2014 — 22:40

1/1600 s APERTURE f 5.6 ISO 1250 FOCAL LENGTH 840 mm



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Case Study

WRITTEN BY Laura Asendio • PHOTOS BY Jeff Hardy

L’Oréal making its mark in the U.S. I

n 2009, L’Oréal, the world’s largest health and beauty care company, opened a distribution center in Walton, KY., in order to continue their U.S. expansion. Cimcorp was carefully chosen by L’Oréal to help resolve the ongoing challenges of using a manual, traditional facility design by implementing an innovative solution for its new distribution center (Walton DC). Walton DC, L’Oréal’s largest U.S.-based distribution center, was built to distribute Garnier and L’Oréal Paris hair care and styling products both domestically and internationally. Streamlined operations and increased efficiency When Walton DC originally opened, they were using an entirely manual order processing model to hand-pick 10 million pounds per year, using a three-shift operation, staffed exclusively with a subcontracted workforce. L’Oréal made it a priority to reduce the facility operation hours from three shifts to two, while improving outbound order quality and providing a superior level of customer service. Even more prominently, L’Oréal wanted to hold the premier standard in energy conservation and worker health and safety by decreasing the amount of manually lifted and picked items each year and reducing transportable waste. Jonathan Hart, director, Physical Flows L’Oréal USA, said, “The Cimcorp layer picking solution was chosen for its sophisticated gantry automation and its ability to reduce operating costs in the facility. Walton DC feels confident using a solution that is widely utilized by other major players in the beverage industry



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and has the adaptability to work with our unique requirements.” Once the decision to move forward with Cimcorp was made, collaboration between the two companies spanned almost a full year. Cimcorp was very thorough during the design phase, making sure to hand-pick the most beneficial layout design for order processing material flows in Walton DC. Solution to meet picking demands Cimcorp’s layer pick system - a fully automated, robotic system with the ability to pick a near limitless variety of products, access a large volume of inventory with a single machine, and create customer orders in any sequence desired - was strategically chosen and built in Walton DC because it best fit L’Oréal’s business needs. The layer pick system is suited for facilities that pick more than 1,000 layers per day from 50-500 stock keeping units (SKUs). L’Oréal additionally took their layer picking system a step farther by investing in a double gantry system in order to provide 100 percent redundancy. Cimcorp furthermore determined that it was essential to implement a forward reserve cascading replenishment system for the 6,000 pallets per month, to reduce forklift travel within the 680,000 square foot facility. With this racking system, the high velocity SKUs are stored within 200 feet from the induction stations. Cimcorp’s warehouse management system (WMS) was integrated with L’Oréal’s business interface module (BIM) to facilitate communication with the SAP system.

Additional benefits With the installation of Cimcorp’s layer pick system, the flow of orders and productivity have become more efficient and consistent compared to the manual order processing solution in Walton DC. The end-to-end solution allowed the distribution center to reduce and reallocate existing resources to other operations within the facility, such as receiving, warehousing, and shipping. In addition, the ability to build taller outbound pallets has allowed the average number of pallets per outbound shipment to be reduced, therefore creating additional benefits regarding wooden pallet costs, forklift touches, and transportation savings. Along with the ergonomic and environmental benefits, the distribution has increased worker safety by decreasing the amount of manually lifted and picked items each year. L’Oréal is continuing to benefit from the replenishment of 6,000 pallets per month and 100 percent accuracy and traceability at a faster rate. It is currently handling 1 million cases per month. Having met the expected quality and productivity, L’Oréal as a culture is embracing automation to the fullest level. Cimcorp’s robotic layer picking solution in Walton DC has successfully been implemented, with future plans to employ other forms of automation to allow the Walton DC to further handle numerous types of products (corrugated, shrink wrapped, etc.).


L’Oréal USA, Walton DC’s new layer picking system in action

Walton DC feels confident using a solution that is widely utilized by other major players in the beverage industry and has the adaptability to work with our unique requirements. Jonathan Hart Director, Physical Flows L’Oréal USA

6k 100% +1M








Cimcorp for E-commerce

WRITTEN BY Paula Ovaskainen • ILLUSTRATION BY Jonne-Pekka Stenroos

Make every thousandth of a second count Cimcorp’s revolutionary order fulfillment solution is designed to meet the requirements of today’s retail and distribution sectors for smaller order-processing windows and thereby increasing sales.

Companies in the consumer goods market face challenges that are largely due to the increase in e-commerce and the resulting changes necessary to keep up with demand. To overcome these challenges, manufacturers, retailers and wholesalers need a well-organized, multi-channel distribution strategy that can be easily updated. Cimcorp’s innovative order-picking solution is based on our proven, gantrybased robotic technology, the unique system is ideal for order fulfillment and storage in the food & beverage, retail, e-commerce, and distribution sectors. Through extremely rapid order picking, the solution shortens lead times to enable more sales – potentially twice as many – and enhance customer service. With Cimcorp’s automation being based on a simple, scalable, and movable robotic concept that is easy to install and maintain, the result is a rapid return on investment (ROI). The technology can also be used as an ‘island’ of automation that is integrated with surrounding manual operations.



1 / 2016



Fast fulfillment By shortening the order-processing window, robotic handling enables improved customer service and more sales through later order cut-off times, greater geographical reach via earlier dispatch, same-day deliveries, and longer shelf life for fresh products. Faster order processing can also cut the cost of delivery – especially via third-party couriers – while more frequent fulfillment also reduces inventory levels and thereby the amount of capital tied up in stock.

Rapid ROI “Our robotic systems are designed for fast manufacture, installation, and startup,” explains Kai Tuomisaari, Cimcorp’s Vice President of Sales and Projects. “Being modular, they are scalable to provide flexibility for the future, so can be expanded – or even moved – quite easily. Importantly in the food sector, they are also easy to clean, with the system able to clear the entire storage floor. Short timescales for projects – from initial enquiry to final handover – combine with highly efficient operation to deliver a rapid return on investment for clients.” DAIRY

More out of less With stock accessed via linear robots on overhead gantries, Cimcorp’s solution requires no racking or sprinkler systems, providing further cost savings. As there is no need for conventional warehouse aisles, storage density is maximized. Rapid retrieval and accurate order picking are taken care of by one simple and energy-efficient technology.

Learn more and get in touch:




Keep your finger on the pulse of automation anywhere and everywhere around the world. Join us on Twitter! 18.8.2016 @IND_TODAY


@CimcorpOy’s #automation solutions give you the edge in an ever-changing e-commerce market.

Playing Ball Games for a Good Cause node/700 #Icehearts


Dive into the pool of milk and see how to become ‘#DairyPlant of the Year’! 5.8.2016

Once you go #automation, you never go back! Glenmore Distillery #distributioncenter #innovation #layerpicking




Pokemons taking advantage of our #monorailtransfer when they run away @CimcorpOy! #PokemonGO #automation #robotics

Cimcorp announces partnership with Emkat Solutions Ltd #automation #intralogistics

We really enjoyed long discussions with visitors at #CeMAT2016 Thank you! Coming up


Today we had #safetyday #action going! :) http://bit. ly/23NfkmS #caring @CimcorpOy #HSE


Automation all around today! Minister @AnneBerner visited @CimcorpOy. Thank you! @LVM #SuomiAreena #Ulvila #automation



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Perspective portrait

WRITTEN BY Tanja Hovi • PHOTO BY Anssi Koskinen

Bruises fade, friendships last Service engineer Risto Peltomäki has played rugby on three continents. In his opinion, rugby is always a gentleman’s game regardless of national borders or cultural differences.


n a physical sport, on the pitch things can get heated and boil over, but fellow players and referees are treated with respect. The referee is the king of the game. After the match, bruises fade and rugby players are good friends off the pitch.” Peltomäki, who previously played hockey and football, got to know rugby during his student exchange year in the United States. “A South African student friend at Tennessee Tech encouraged me to go along with him to training. I immediately became hooked on this all-round sport, where everyone gets to do everything. Run with the oval-shaped ball, tackle, pass. Attack and defend.” When he came back to his hometown in Finland, Peltomäki continued playing at the local Pori Rugby Club, which has teams for men and women. Both teams are aiming to reach the top of Finnish rugby. When Peltomäki left for a yearlong secondment to Indonesia in summer 2015, an essential part of the preparations for his trip included finding out about the rugby clubs in the country.

“Luckily for me, it turned out that one of the active rugby players came from the town I was going to live in, Lippo Cikarang. I got a ride to training with him.” In Indonesia, his passion for rugby was really put to the test, since the drive to Tuesday training in Jakarta took two hours. After practice, showering, eating, and the journey home, he more or less went straight to bed. Matches were played on Saturdays so Peltomäki didn’t have time to get bored at the weekends either. “Most of the players had moved to Indonesia for work, like me. We had people from all walks of life, from lawyer to gym equipment salesman, from cellphone manufacturing to printing. When we were playing, all job titles were forgotten.“ Muscular Peltomäki is himself built like a modern-day Viking, but he visibly lights up when recommending rugby to everybody. “We had very different kinds of players in our Indonesian team. A pint-sized person who knows how to tackle can bundle even a huge opponent to the ground in the wink of an eye. All you need are rugby cleats, mouth guards, and insurance.”

Rugby Union ROOTS



Rugby School, England 1845

15 against 15

The variant Rugby Sevens was included in the 2016 Rio Olympics


120 x 70 m


Meet us at conferences and trade fairs RubberTech China Dec 1-3, 2016, Shanghai, China

Cimcorp in brief

Tire Technology Expo Feb 14-16, 2017, Hannover, Germany

As well as being a manufacturer and integrator of pioneering material handling systems for the tire industry, we have developed unique robotic solutions for order fulfillment and storage that are being used in the food & beverage, retail, e-commerce, fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) and postal services sectors. In addition, we offer comprehensive customer support services.

PROMAT April 3-6, 2017, Chicago, IL, USA More at

With locations in Finland, Canada and USA, Cimcorp Group has around 300 employees and has delivered over 2,000 logistics automation solutions in 40 countries across five continents. Cimcorp Group – part of Murata Machinery, Ltd. (, consists of Cimcorp Oy in Finland, Cimcorp Automation Ltd. in Canada and Cimcorp USA, Inc. in the United States.

See more at




Cimcorp Oy Satakunnantie 5 FI-28400 ULVILA, FINLAND Phone +358 10 2772 000

Cimcorp Automation Ltd. 635 South Service Road GRIMSBY, ON L3M 4E8 CANADA Phone +1 (905) 643-9700

Passion for optimized material flow

Cimcorp Flow Magazine 1 / 2016  

Sentury Tire: Passion for benefit “I forced my people to accept the Cimcorp concept,” Qin Long, Chairman of Sentury Tire, smiles. “It is not...

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