Amazon has announced it will acquire Belgium-based machinery company Cloostermans, in the latest expansion of the ecommerce giant’s use of warehouse robotics.
Cloostermans specialises in the field known as mechatronics, which combines mechanics, electronics and computing. Amazon has used Cloostermans’ technology since 2019 for functions including stacking and moving heavy palettes and totes.
Amazon added that Cloostermans’s experience in this field has helped it to deploy solutions that support employees in their roles, improve safety, and reduce packaging waste.
“Amazon’s investments in robotics and technology are supporting how we build a better and safer workplace for our employees and deliver for our customers,” said Ian Simpson, vice president of global robotics at Amazon.
“As we continue to broaden and accelerate the robotics and technology we design, engineer and deploy across our operations, we look forward to welcoming Cloostermans to Amazon and are excited to see what we can build together.”
Cloostermans’s team of approximately 200 employees will be joining Amazon Global Robotics’ growing presence in Europe.
“We’re thrilled to be joining the Amazon family and extending the impact we can have at a global scale,” added Frederik Berckmoes-Joos, CEO of Cloostermans.
“Amazon has raised the bar for how supply chain technologies can benefit employees and customers, and we’re looking forward to be part of the next chapter of this innovation.”
Since Amazon began introducing robotics into its facilities in 2012, the firm has deployed more than 520,000 robotic drive units worldwide, which it said also created over a million new jobs.
“Automation has led to new roles at our facilities, including jobs such as robotics and mechatronics maintenance technicians as well as flow control specialists. To support career development, we have introduced apprenticeship programs that offer our employees paid training and on-the-job learning that leads to certification, technical skills, and an opportunity for rewarding work,” Amazon said in a blog post.
Completion of this latest transaction is subject to closing conditions and terms were not disclosed.