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Nestlé invests in building first robots-run distribution center to deliver Kit Kat faster

By Douglas Yu contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Chocolate, Nestle, Kit kat

One of the machines Nestlé will be using in its future distribution center. Pic: Swisslog
One of the machines Nestlé will be using in its future distribution center. Pic: Swisslog
Nestlé has invested £55m ($72m) in building its first robots-run distribution center in a partnership with XPO Logistics.

The 638,000-square-foot facility, which is scheduled to complete by 2020, will be located in the new Sergo East Midlands Gateway Logistics Park in Leicestershire, UK, and it will help deliver some of Nestlé’s key brands quicker, including Kit Kat, Maggi and Nescafé.

“The site’s digital ecosystem will integrate predictive data and intelligent machines to deliver one of the most advanced distribution management centers in the world… [it] will also function as a testbed environment for XPO technology prototypes prior to global release,”​ said Nestlé.

The company noted the center is “strategic located”​ because it benefits from easy access to the M1 motorway for road transport, the East Midlands Airport for Cargo flights, and an onsite rail freight terminal with direct access to the major UK ports of Southampton, Felixstowe, London Gateway and the Channel Tunnel.

It is also being developed in a way to minimize the visual impact to nearby settlements, added Nestlé.

“Additional sustainability measures include energy-saving LED lighting, environmentally friendly ammonia refrigeration, air source heat pumps for administration areas and rainwater harvesting,”​ said the company.

David Hix, director of supply chain at Nestlé, said, “this is a world-first investment for Nestlé that builds on a century and a half of proud history in [the UK]. Our partnership with XPO will encourage innovation and experimentation in our UK logistics operations and help futureproof our business.

“We will be able to be even more responsive for our customers across our brands, which include some of the most recognizable in the world,”​ he added.

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