COIM, a pioneer in the 4.0. industry

COIM, a pioneer in the chemistry 4.0. industry
Inaugurated a new automated and self-supporting warehouse

Milan, 13 September 2021
C.O.I.M. S.p.A., an Italian multinational company producing speciality chemicals since 1962 and operating worldwide with eighteen manufacturing and trading companies, has inaugurated a new automated and self-supporting warehouse in Offanengo (Cremona).

An investment worth € 10 million to create a dislocated warehouse, rationalise the internal traffic, and ensure the utmost safety.

After analysing all the options, including floor stacking, semi-automated, and automatic warehouse with stacker cranes, C.O.I.M. has opted for the latter, a bold choice for the chemical industry.

The new warehouse is intended for stocking chemicals, raw materials and finished products ready for delivery. It’s fully automated by means of a tailor-made Warehouse Management System (W.M.S.), which traces the turnover of the managed products, optimising their distribution in the stocking area. The W.M.S. also ensures product traceability, whose progress is checked by a loading unit barcoding system.

Regulatory and technological challenges and the uniqueness of C.O.I.M.’s new warehouse

“Flexibility was a major prerogative when we had to choose among the various solutions, considering the multiple types of packaging C.O.I.M. uses and the need for a facility that could contain a high number of goods. Before choosing the fully automated warehouse, we analysed all the dimensions to ensure high productivity and performance and handle the significant inbound and outbound flows of our production plant”, explained Paolo D’Adda, Supply Chain Manager of Coim S.p.A.

Because this warehouse is inside a chemical plant, it required specific solutions, such as a double fire-fighting system.

To meet all these requirements and comply with safety and fire-fighting regulations, C.O.I.M. had to draw on various resources, involving the supply chain, the H.S.E., the Engineering, I.C.T., Security, and Production departments. Moreover, C.O.I.M. had to rely on external designers and leading Italian companies in the automated warehouse industry to complete the project in 2018 and ended in 2021.

“This project involved over forty direct suppliers and over one hundred suppliers if we consider even sub-supplies”, said Massimo Tonani, Site Manager of C.O.I.M.’s plant in Offanengo. “We involved Italy’s best companies and experts as well as C.O.I.M.’s strategic functions.”

Warehouse performance and reduced landscape and environmental impact

“Environmental impact was a major issue when we evaluated the various technologies needed for this project. If we opted for a traditional warehouse, we would have had to build on a much larger area to obtain the same result”, concluded Massimo Tonani.

The new warehouse rests on a 3,000 sq.m area and develops vertically to contain over 10,000 pallet seats, against 800 pallet seats of a traditional warehouse of the same size. An exceptional milestone obtained in 25 metres of height, 30 metres of width and 100 metres of length.

Moreover, to mitigate landscape impact, C.O.I.M. has planted over 1,000 high trees around the area.

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