Panalpina and Cardiff Business School, Cardiff University in Wales (UK), had set out to search for the ‘hidden formula’ for lean inventories three years ago. This innovative partnership between the university and the global logistics and freight forwarding company had allowed the company to launch D2ID, a new inventory forecasting application. The co-innovation approach has been so successful, that the research is now being expanded to include new manufacturing technologies such as 3D printing.
The benefit of this approach for Panalpina is that it can then predict how much space is needed at its facilities, where to position the facilities and what services to offer. The benefit for the customers is that they have a partner who will work with them to keep their products moving and minimize working capital requirements in their supply chains. This approach is called as the ‘Demand-Driven Inventory Dispositioning’, in short ‘D2ID’.
The follow-up projects with the Cardiff Business School and the Cardiff School of Engineering launched in January 2016, will focus on new manufacturing technologies. The aim is to help Panalpina’s customers identify the right products that could be switched from traditional to new, additive manufacturing techniques such as 3D printing.