Destination Maternity is the world’s largest designer and retailer of maternity apparel. As of January, 2016, it operates 1,815 retail locations, including 536 retail locations under the trade names: Motherhood Maternity®, A Pea in the Pod®, and Destination Maternity®, and 1,279 apparel departments within retailers such as Macy’s®, Sears®, Buy Buy Baby®, Boscov’s®, and Century 21®. The Company also provides maternity apparel for Kohl’s Department Stores®. Destination Maternity’s inventory is also available for direct to consumer shipments on brand websites and other e-commerce sites.
The Invata designed, built, and controlled warehouse automation system handles all aspects of Destination Maternity’s retail distribution, wholesale distribution, e-commerce fulfillment, and reverse logistics processing (consolidations and returns) for the U.S. market and various international markets. This includes e-commerce business coming through some of its retail partners’ websites as well.
Designing a system with such a high degree of servicing flexibility and multi-tasking capability required a multi-purpose approach to the employment of the material handling equipment, a highly innovative system design, and a highly sophisticated Warehouse Execution System to control the operation.
Some of the advanced material handling equipment (MHE) technology incorporated into the system included:
- A high-speed shuttle automated storage and retrieval system (ASRS) with 2 aisles of 21 levels of tote storage (approximately 25,000 totes) and 24 high-speed shuttles which are transferred between levels as needed.
- A mini-load crane ASRS with 4 cranes in high density, high-rise bays with a combined capacity of 75,000 cartons or totes.
- A Bomb Bay sorter feeding 600 discharge destinations at sortation speeds averaging 15,000 units per hour.
- A multi-purpose put wall with over 2000 put/pick-to-light displays.
- A substantial conveyor system including, numerous 24v routing sorters, 5 narrow belt sorters, 11 merges, and machine interface stations.
- Wearable radio-frequency technology throughout the entire facility for all user transactions.
Controlling the entire fulfillment operation is Invata’s Warehouse Execution Software. The Invata WES simultaneously orchestrates receiving, inventory storage, inventory management, picking, routing, order management and fulfillment, sorting, packing, labeling, and shipping for all Destination Maternity fulfillment channels. Processing over 400,00 units daily, the Invata WES dynamically deploys in-motion inventory while dynamically assigning equipment and labor resources on a real-time basis to optimize order fulfillment. Invata’s WES also provides complete system visibility as well as extensive reporting and metrics on system resources and system performance for use in operations management and evolution/optimization of system performance over time.
Carl Marcinkowski, Sr. Vice President of Distribution and Transportation at Destination Maternity Corporation said, “We researched a variety of designs that all satisfied different requirements. But no one, except Invata, blended it together and satisfied all our requirements. The Invata solution is both flexible and tailored to our unique business requirements — and Invata’s warehouse execution software enables us to multi-task the automation equipment to service multiple needs. We needed a complete solution from a single, fully accountable source, and Invata provided that,” he added.
“Within the first two weeks of start-up, the new fulfillment system at Destination Maternity successfully processed some of the heaviest inbound receipts and outbound shipments in the company’s history,” said Ryan Sheehan, CEO of Invata. “This level of performance at system start-up validates our unique value proposition of providing complete solutions derived from the data sciences of analytics, modeling, simulation, and optimization and taking complete responsibility for the results. We look forward to a long relationship with Destination Maternity.”
About Invata Intralogistics
Invata Intralogistics, Inc. is an innovative expert in the design, implementation, and life cycle support of automated distribution and fulfillment center operations with demonstrable expertise in both software and systems engineering and development.
Specializing in integrating the flow of information with the flow of material goods, Invata offers complete solutions that begin with in-depth operational analysis and end with purpose-driven, turnkey intralogistics systems that optimize processes and resource utilization while maximizing operational efficiency.