DHL ‘Innovation Day’ winners introduce new logistics tech

At Deutsche Post-DHL’s 2017 “Innovation Day” at its Bonn, Germany, Innovation Center, the winners of a series of technology “challenges” introduced new products, including autonomous warehouse robots, an online platform for package drop-offs and an internet of things (IoT) approach to online shopping, among other new logistics offerings.

As the winner of the Robotics Challenge, United States-based Vecna developed a piece-picking robot designed to independently navigate warehouses and move boxes of various sizes from shelves to a cart. In the Sharing Economy Challenge, United Kingdom-based Parcelly won for its platform, which coordinates package drop-offs at local businesses, while providing instant notification and flexible pick-ups.

Meanwhile, the startup, Kwik – based in the U.S., with research and development in Tel Aviv, Israel – won DP-DHL’s “Shark Tank” competition, featuring its online shopping product that enables shoppers to reorder products by pushing a physical button that can be located next to appliances or pantries in the home, similar to Amazon Dash. Kwik also offers an open marketplace and analytics dashboard that lets brands choose their delivery and payment partners.

Contest winners received various prizes, including the opportunity to participate in proof-of-concept projects with DHL.

PACCAR Parts, also based in the U.S., was also recognized by DHL for its role in co-creating DHL MetriX Freight – a dimensioning system that gives accurate measurement of freight, regardless of shape, in under a second. A pilot of the system was already conducted with DHL, PACCAR Parts and software startup Metrilus, and has been expanded to five DHL sites.

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