VARGO Helps American Eagle's New DC Soar

This case history about American Eagle Outfitter’s comes courtesy of VARGO™ Companies. It has been selected and edited by the MHM editorial staff for clarity, content and style.

VARGO™ Companies threw the switch to “go live” at a new American Eagle Outfitter’s (AEO) distribution center in Kansas this month, after a comprehensive design, installation and software implementation of warehousing systems. The new systems were designed to manage as well as provide for expansion of AEO’s rapidly growing American Eagle Direct, Martin + Osa and aerie retail ventures.

The project, which began in March 2006, involved efforts from the three companies that comprise VARGO™; VARGO™ Integrated Systems designed, implemented and installed all components, including high speed sortation and picking optimization. VARGO™ Adaptive Software created custom Adaptive-WCS™ software to control systems and balance labor, and VARGO™ Material Handling designed and installed pick modules, selective storage systems and other equipment to fulfill the project.

AEO was faced with the challenge of meeting the distribution needs of three expanding enterprises simultaneously, and turned to VARGO™, as they had previously for redesign of their existing distribution centers including another Kansas DC. The innovative design VARGO™ created for AEO capitalized on shipping efficiency gained by tying an existing DC with this new facility, giving AEO the flexibility to serve their separate enterprises and increased capacity to meet the incredible growth of each.

“AEO was a very challenging and exciting Greenfield study for the VARGO™ team. AEO has a unique warehousing philosophy; more than 70% of merchandise flows through their distribution centers direct from receiving to shipping,” explains Carlos Ysasi, VARGO™ vice president of systems engineering. “Creating a facility that would meet the different challenges of AEO’s direct-to-consumer, Martin + Osa and aerie operations required a lot of imagination and great communication with AEO.”

The key to controlling the systems and its flexibility to serve each venture is COFE™, a revolutionary new Adaptive-WCS™ developed by VARGO™ Adaptive Software. COFE™ monitors and controls every aspect of picking and sorting without the need for operator input. COFE™ also assesses and predicts labor needs within the distribution center and executes labor transfer orders automatically.
Installation and implementation were completed in March 2007, and systems were tested prior to “going live” for direct-to-consumer operations. aerie operations are scheduled to “go live” at the beginning of June 2007 and for Martin + Osa, July 2007.

MHMonline.com welcomes relevant, exclusive case histories that explain in specific detail the business benefits that new software and material-handling equipment has provided to specific users. Send submissions to Clyde Witt([email protected]), MHM Senior Editor. All submissions will be edited for clarity, content and style.

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