UK tech retailer invests £250,000 in exoskeletons for warehouse staff
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UK tech retailer Currys has revealed it has invested over £250,000 in a fleet of robotic exoskeleton suits to help colleagues from its logistics partner, GXO. The retailer says it will allow warehouse staff to work safely and efficiently throughout the busy festive period.
The suits are being used at the Currys facility in Newark, and will help colleagues “carry out their physical day-to-day tasks, putting less pressure on their joints and muscles while lifting heavy loads and helping prevent injuries in a manual handling environment.”
As Currys explains, the robotic suits are worn like a small backpack and give colleagues at least 10 tonnes of relief over the course of a typical working shift — with up to 30kg of assistance to the lower back per lift.
The waterproof exoskeletons are made with ultralight carbon fibre and sport an AI-based safety system that alerts users of poor posture and incorrect lifting practices in real time.
Commenting on the investment, Lindsay Haselhurst, Currys Chief Operating Officer, said:
“The physical and mental wellbeing of our colleagues and our service partners is really important to us. As the number one technology retailer in the UK, we aim to have state-of-the-art tech throughout our supply chain. Combining this with our priority to support our colleagues is why we have invested in these exoskeletons at our Newark distribution centre.”
Gavin Williams, GXO Managing Director for the UK and Ireland, added:
“We’ve successfully deployed robotic suits in several warehouses across GXO’s global network and are excited to make this technology available to our team in the Newark site thanks to Currys’ significant investment. This is a testament to our joint commitment to provide a safe and fulfilling working environment for our employees, whilst unlocking efficiencies and delivering substantial savings for our customer.”
Finally, Armin Schmidt, CEO of German Bionic, who manufacturer the ‘Cray X’ exoscelaton, said:
“We are delighted that Currys, the UK’s leading retailer of electronics and home appliances, have partnered with German Bionic to empower their warehouse workers with our Cray X exoskeletons that will help them to lift and carry goods more safely and with the support they need to safeguard their health”, says Armin Schmidt, CEO of German Bionic.