Robots, AI are infiltrating Fast Retailing’s Supply Chain

Fast Retailing Announces Expansion of Strategic Global Partnership to Strengthen Supply Chain Transformation

Fast Retailing on Novemvber 13, 2019, announces that it has concluded strategic global partnership agreements with MUJIN Inc., a Japanese intelligent industrial robot controller manufacturer, and Exotec Solutions SAS, a French robotics solutions provider. These accords expand the alliance initiated in October 2018 with DAIFUKU Co., Ltd., a worldwide leader in materials handling systems.

Commenting on the announcement, Takuya Jimbo, Group Executive Vice President of Fast Retailing, said, “Fast Retailing is pleased today to welcome two new partners to an alliance we created a year ago. We will draw on the outstanding ability and experience of all three partners to strengthen our supply chain by stepping up our warehouse automation and global transformation.” He added, “Placing customers at the heart of our business means delivering the right products that meet the real needs of customers, at the right price, in the right quantities, in the right place and at the right time. This is something we aim to be the first company in the world to achieve.”

Initiatives under the Strategic Global Partnership

1) Further automate warehousing

Apparel picking automation is challenging because of the nature and variety of items. Fast Retailing will accelerate warehouse automation by working with MUJIN to develop and internationally deploy picking robots employing artificial intelligence-based motion planning.

 2) Globally deploy automated warehousing

Working with DAIFUKU from last year, Fast Retailing has begun to automate two warehouses in Japan and another two abroad. In addition, Fast Retailing looks to initially automate one facility each with MUJIN and Exotec Solutions internationally, and will thereafter expand such endeavours.

3) Expand strategic partnerships and fast-track hiring

Fast Retailing will build an unparalleled supply chain by expanding alliances with companies that have advanced technologies, while recruiting experts to spearhead supply chain reforms.