May 23, 2022

SymboticWalmart400x275Symbotic LLC and Walmart have announced an expanded commercial agreement to implement Symbotic’s robotics and software automation platform in all 42 of Walmart’s regional distribution centers over the coming years. This agreement expands on Walmart’s prior commitment to deploy Symbotic Systems in 25 regional distribution centers.

The Symbotic System automation technology platform is powered by a fleet of fully autonomous robots and artificial intelligence-powered software. Combined with a high-density physical structure, the system aims to improve efficiency, accuracy and agility while reducing costs. The software orchestrates the robots to receive, store and retrieve a virtually limitless number of SKUs, and proprietary end-of-arm tools and vision systems help output cases, totes, and packages quickly.

The companies said the high-density robotics and end-to-end software platform plays a strategic role in supporting the retailer’s goal of modernizing its supply chain network, and also allows Walmart to transform its regional distribution centers to provide faster responsiveness to store orders, increase inventory accuracy and offer higher capacity for receiving and shipping freight to stores. The technology is able to build palletized loads of department-sorted inventory that enables Walmart to get products onto shelves at its more than 4,700 stores more quickly, while also making material handling tasks safer and simpler. Walmart said it also creates new, tech-enabled jobs, such as cell operator and maintenance technician, that offer widely applicable skills in robotics and technology.

“The expanded partnership with Walmart substantiates how our technology is truly reinventing the traditional warehouse and distribution of consumer goods across the supply chain,” said Rick Cohen, chairman, president and chief product officer at Symbotic. “As a technology platform with deep roots in warehousing and distribution – our system addresses some of the biggest challenges of today’s complex supply chain, such as inventory agility, transportation cost and labor availability Modernizing the warehouse allows consumers to get what they need faster and creates benefits for everyone, including workers, customers and their local communities.”

Walmart said it has begun embedding Symbotic’s technology in select regional distribution centers, with the retrofitting process of all 42 regional distribution centers expected to be completed over the next eight-plus years.

More details on the original project are available here.