Osaro, a developer of advanced robotics for e-commerce, has partnered with Zenni, an online eyewear retailer, to automate the “last meter” of Zenni’s fulfillment center in Novato, California.
Three Osaro Robotic Bagging Systems will take on the responsibility of readying eyewear orders for shipment to US customers.
The implementation is also an industry first. This is the first time a robot will be assigned the responsibility of working with an automated mechanical bagging system to ensure a customer’s unique order is placed into the correct bag for shipment.
Osaro has partnered with Pregis, a supplier of automated bagging equipment, to meet Zenni’s needs. Osaro’s vision and grasping technology enables the robot to rise to the challenge of this particular piece-picking task, which is of importance to Zenni since each eyeglass order is associated with a customer’s prescription.
“We are focused on quality and innovation,” says Simon Goh, director of distribution and facilities at Zenni, which has surpassed 45 million pairs of eyeglasses sold over 19 years of growth.
“With a mountain of online orders and a persistent shortage of labor, we looked to Osaro to take us to the leading edge of technology to be sure our customers receive fast and accurate processing.”
Derik Pridmore, CEO of Osaro, says: “The stakes are high here: special-order, high-value items that must be bagged and labeled correctly to ensure they are sent to the right customer.
“Our extensive experience in other e-commerce production environments, coupled with our machine-learning capabilities, enables our robotic bagging system to meet customer production targets and to deploy workers onto more important tasks.”
The project will optimize the use of a pick-and-place robot to perform a complex task that demands visual acuity, precision, and dexterity. Zenni has a team of workers capable of handling 10 orders per minute and accuracy is key to making sure that the right order gets to the right customer.
Installing robots to handle e-commerce processing also mitigates labor turnover and staff shortages that are challenges in the rapidly growing e-commerce fulfillment sector, says the company.