Wisconsin-based home improvement retailer Menards has announced plans to construct a new warehouse that will incorporate a 60-foot-tall robotic system to speed up delivery times and cut operating costs, the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram reports.
“To be more competitive, we are adding a huge machine enclosed in a steel skin that will help us get products to our customers much faster,” Jeff Abbott, spokesman for Menards, says.
According to Abbott, the 121,700-square-foot robotic warehouse is a necessary component in a “fight for survival” against e-commerce heavyweights.
“Online companies like Amazon and others would love nothing more than to run Menards out of business,” Abbott says.
Menards says the robotic system will cut costs and create lower prices for customers, who will receive their orders more quickly when the system is fully implemented.
Menards has yet to announce a timetable for the construction of the warehouse and the robotic system. The company has submitted preliminary plans to build the new warehouse near its existing distribution center in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, the article states.
Earlier this year, Menards founder John Menard Jr. was named the richest man in Wisconsin. Menards was founded in 1964 and has roughly 306 stores in the western and midwestern U.S.