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As the nights get longer and the opressive cloud of winter begins to descend, Logistics link North will once again brighten up Doncaster racecourse with an array of innovations to help boost supply chain efficiency.  Lucy Tesseras reports.

Doncaster Racecourse will be opening its doors on 13th and 14th October for the sixth annual Logistics Link North show. More than 60 companies will be exhibiting at this year’s event, showcasing the latest and greatest products and services to help optimise supply chain operations. Exhibitors will be on hand to discuss how they can best meet visitors’ specific business needs, and many will be providing on-stand demonstrations.

The show will also have a free case study-led seminar programme, offering visitors the chance to hear first hand how businesses have benefited from the latest innovations.

Logistics giant dhl supply chain will be exhibiting for the first time. Erleen Anderson, sales and marketing director at DHL Supply Chain, explains: “We believe that Logistics Link North will provide us with an ideal time and cost-efficient platform to greet clients and to talk to companies looking to review their logistics operations. By meeting face to face we can often make faster progress in understanding customer needs and developing solutions more quickly and efficiently. We have space available and a high quality workforce in locations throughout the North and Midlands.”

Automation will be a key theme at the show. SDI Group will be on hand to offer companies an insight into how they can reduce costs and boost operational performance within their warehouse operation. The company will also be sharing top money-saving tips, as well as ways to boost performance in the warehouse.

Knapp UK will be demonstrating its capabilities in the design, installation and maintenance of automated warehouse systems. The company specialises in automated and semi-automated paperless fulfilment systems, including pick-by-light, voice-directed picking and RF solutions. It has implemented some major installations in the UK recently, including projects for Clarks, John Lewis, British Gas and The Co-operative Pharmacy.

Dematic will be highlighting the benefits of its latest generation labour management software, which is integrated with a warehouse management and control system. It says labour management is a critical part of supply chain efficiency, and securing the best possible return on investment in automated logistics is equally dependent on the effectiveness in which the workforce is managed, motivated and deployed.

SSI Schaefer will be offering advice and information on all aspects of the storage and materials handling industry. It has a portfolio of products ranging from single plastic containers to high bay fully automated warehousing systems. The SSI Schaefer team will be available to discuss its latest product range, including a new, enhanced, low cost pick-by-light system that will be on display alongside a table top demonstration of the latest mobile shelving technology.

The Flexi Euro, Narrow Aisle’s compact electric-powered four wheel articulated forklift truck, will be on display. The group says it is suited to low bay warehouses where space is at a premium and high lift performance is not required. John Maguire, sales and marketing director, says: “One of the easiest ways of reducing the cost of the forklift fleet over its lifetime is to cut the number of trucks that you operate on site.”

Aisle-Master will be showcasing its AC electric model and advising visitors how its range of articulated forklifts can help drive down handling and storage costs, while increasing productivity. The manufacturer will also be telling delegates about its site visit and warehouse layout service, supplying free diagrams illustrating how to maximise available storage space.

Jungheinrich will be highlighting trucks from its electric counterbalance range – which, thanks to fourth generation AC technology, it says offer class leading performance with lower running costs. Energy costs are further reduced by reclaiming energy during braking, so that in most applications a truck is able to operate two shifts without changing a battery. Jungheinrich will also be demonstrating models from its collection of warehouse trucks.

Inotec will use its time at Logistics Link North to talk about its DURAline system, which was developed in line with recent directives from the Health and Safety Executive stating the necessity of delineated separation of pedestrians and moving forklifts.

Three new products are being launched by bpi.films at the show, all of which boast green credentials. Wrapsmartblue is designed for the food industry and employs a blue tint to help minimise accidental food contamination; Wrapsmartblack benefits from a black tint that allows pallets to be colour-coded for easier identification; and Wrapsmartsubzero is designed for cold chain use and can perform down to -25°C.

B+ Equipment will be showing delegates how to address the hidden cost of packing with its Ultipack and I-Pack products. Ultipack automatically glues a corrugated insert that locks the products and cuts void fill costs by half, while automating the packing process and line tasks; and I-Pack reduces the height of the box to the exact height of the product.

The latest version of Wire3 Technologies’ award-winning Sat3 vehicle tracking and fleet management system will be on show. It integrates with its Mobile Tornado Lone Worker and Push To Talk systems.

RedPrairie will be discussing how supply chain workforce management can be an effective tool to meet the current economic climate. Andrew Kirkwood, senior vice president and executive director, says: “At a time when it is vital for businesses to reduce cost and increase efficiencies, RedPrairie’s Workforce Management solution has allowed some of our customers to cut labour costs with 15 to 50 per cent savings, while achieving an ROI in less than six months. Workforce Management is well established in North America, and we are now experiencing an increased demand for the product in the UK.”

Minster Logistics has launched the latest version of its warehouse management system, incorporating fully end-to-end voice technology, which it will be showcasing at Logistics Link North. The new release of the application addresses all aspects of the warehousing operation, including goods receipt, put-away, replenishment, picking, cross-docking, marshalling, loading, full stock takes and perpetual inventory.

Interactive warehouse management systems designed to boost performance at businesses within third party logistics, manufacturing, distribution and bonded warehouses, will be on show at DeltaWMS. It will be demonstrating its Sage Line 50 fully integrated software, as well as displaying its latest KPI monitor.

Proteus Software will be exhibiting on its own stand as well as the Psion Teklogix stand, showing its warehouse management software alongside Psion’s range of mobile computing products, which are suitable for all types of warehouse operation. Psion will also be demonstrating its voice picking using Vocollect headsets.

Honeywell Scanning & Mobility will be presenting the Dolphin 7600 with GPS, an extension of the standard 7600. The ergonomic one-handed design has been built to be held comfortably over extended shifts, and as the GPS unit connection is handled through the onboard Windows Mobile 6 operating system, there is no extra installation, configuration, or customising required.

A range of batch and rugged radio data terminals, including hand-held, tablet and truck mounted devices will be exhibited on the Belgravium stand. Group operations director Jon Hall will also be co-presenting a seminar with auto ID specialist Inotec on both days, which focuses on the use of RFID in the logistics and industrial sectors. High efficiency dimming light fittings, will be on display at the Luxonic Lighting stand. It reckons replacing old energy inefficient lighting can result in a payback period of less than 12 months.

The Logistics Academy Yorkshire and Humber (LAYH) is a new region-wide partnership organisation bringing together employers and training providers in the logistics sector. The academy offers information and advice on quality-assured training and will be providing information leaflets on its stand helping visitors to understand their business needs and skills requirements and provide access to training.

Invest in Doncaster, the headline sponsor of Logistics Link North, will be highlighting the advantages of positioning a company in the Doncaster area. It will be on hand to talk about the benefits of the location, including its proximity to the M18, A1 and M180 motorways, as well as some specific sites such as West Moor Park and Redhouse Interchange, which already boast names such as Ikea, Next, Asda and B&Q.

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