GMG Raises Supply Chain Performance to New Levels with Next Generation Distribution Center

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Established in 1978, Gulf Marketing Group (GMG) is one of the Middle East’s leading, family owned companies. Gulf Marketing Group operates regionally, across the GCC and boasts a diverse portfolio of brands, retail outlets and services. Gulf Marketing Group subsidiaries operate in key sectors such as retail and distribution of sporting goods and lifestyle brands, health and fitness, food and food processing, integrated 3PL logistics, real estate, healthcare and pharmacies, education and technology.

With its extensive retail and distribution operations across the GCC it was critical for GMG to optimize its supply chain to be able to keep pace with the ever-increasing consumer demand for rapid delivery and mobile commerce. As part of its digital transformation roadmap GMG embarked on a journey to take its supply chain to the next level with the implementation of a modern, flexible warehouse management system for its newly built “mega distribution center” (MegaDC) in JAFZA, United Arab Emirates.

With the objective to implement a state-of-the-art solution and maximize warehouse staff productivity GMG selected Clariba, a leading SAP GOLD Partner in the Middle East and Europe, to implement SAP Extended Warehouse Management (SAP EWM) to automate its inbound and outbound processes integrated with modular conveyor systems and “pick to light” technology.


OBJECTIVES

To be able to drive its wholesale, retail and e-commerce operations for more than 6 diverse business units across the GCC, the team at GMG commissioned a new Distribution Centre (MEGA-DC) in JAFZA, Dubai. Tasked with the project to implement SAP Extended Warehouse Management as warehouse technology platform for its state-of-the-art MegaDC, the GMG team set off to achieve the following objectives:

  • Reduce order cycle times and offer modern, value-added services to customers.  

  • Manage high-volume warehouse operations cost-effectively with a modern, flexible system that integrates with it warehouse automation solutions

  • Optimize inventory tracking, cross-docking, flow-thru, distribution operations, multichannel fulfilment, and more – all in real time.

  • End-to-end integration with its SAP IS Retail solution for automated processes.

APPROACH FOR SUCCESS

Based on the solution implementation experience of both Clariba and GMG, the teams set out to ensure the right success criteria were defined from the start for this mission-critical and very time-constrained project to guarantee success:

  1. Executive Sponsorship: Sponsorship by the Deputy. Chairman and CEO of GMG to ensure short decision cycles throughout the project, align stakeholders and ultimately, support change management for rapid adoption of the solution.

  2. Business Engagement: Early engagement of the business teams in a rapid-prototyping approach throughout the blueprint phase to ensure solution fit, boost ownership from the start and avoid misunderstandings in later phases.

  3. One Team: Creation of a single team spirit with transparent, trusted and respectful communication, clear responsibilities yet fluid execution where everyone wins.

  4. Optimal Resourcing Mix: A blend of international SAP EWM experts from Clariba blended with local resources for the agile and cost-effective delivery of a mix of onshore and offshore activities.

SOLUTION OVERVIEW

GMGs newly constructed multi-tiered distribution center aims to develop and consolidate warehouse operations using automated technology, boosting growth in GMG’s portfolio and providing a stronger base for its e-commerce business. The facility with an area of 40,000 m2, provides a total storage capacity of 21 million units and throughput of 400,000 items per day. It is equipped with the latest conveyor load system ensuring warehouse operations will be less time-consuming thanks to fully streamlined processes.

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  • Full integration with third party conveyor system and “Pack to Light Automation”

  • Batch Management

  • Enhanced EWM - SAP IS RETAIL integration

  • Custom developed flow-thru and cross-dock processes

  • Custom EWM RFUI screens

    • Inbound packing and receiving

    • Inbound deconsolidation

    • Outbound repacking and pelletizing

    • Physical Inventory

  • Direct printing of customs and other legal documents directly from EWM

  • Full usage of EWM Transportation Units and Wave Management

TECHNOLOGY

The implemented technology stack included as key components:

  • SAP Extended Warehouse Management (SAP EWM)

  • SAP IS/Retail (SAP ECC)

  • SAP ABAP

  • RF Mobile Devices

  • Label Printers

  • Schaefer Conveyor Transport System

  • Knapp Put to Light System

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THE RESULT: State-of-the-Art Supply Chain Logistics at GMG’s Mega DC

The SAP EWM solution delivered by Clariba in under 8 months fully automates more than 15 inbound, outbound, cross-docking and other core processes.

The end-to-end integration of SAP EWM to the Schaefer Conveyor Transport System and the pick to light system from Knapp, ensures that GMG’s warehouse team can now be more effective than ever to satisfy the many inbound and outbound shipments that are processed every single day at the distribution centre.

With this highly effective warehouse management solution in place, GMG can now execute high-volume warehouse operations and manage complex supply chain logistics – delivering the ultimate in visibility and control to satisfy customers across the GCC.

Clariba’s methodology to map our requirements and rapidly demonstrate these complex warehouse processes within the solution proved highly effective and supported our internal adoption.”
— Kapil Sethi, COO
The Clariba team integrated well with our technical and business teams ensuring a flexible, agile implementation approach to deliver a very challenging project in record time to our board.”
— Bilal Abdel Hadi, CIO
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