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Cardinal Health tops 1.1M sq. ft. with new GTA distribution centre

IMAGE: Locus Robotics AMR
An example of Locus Robotics' autonomous mobile robot, in use at Cardinal Health Canada's Dorval, Que., distribution centre. (Screenshot via Cardinal Health Canada Inc.)

Cardinal Health Canada Inc. will increase its nationwide distribution centre network to over a million square feet when it opens a new state-of-the-art robotics facility in the Greater Toronto Area later this year.

The 163,000-square-foot distribution centre in Concord is to be fully operational in late 2023 to early 2024. This will bolster Cardinal Health Canada’s distribution footprint in Ontario to 541,000 square feet and raise its national footprint to 1,120,000 square feet.

It will be Cardinal's ninth regional distribution centre.

“Beyond growing our already significant distribution footprint across Canada, this distribution centre supports Cardinal Health’s market-leading just-in-time Stockless solution, which takes on the complexities of procurement, supply chain, warehousing and transportation within hospitals, so they can focus on what hospitals do best: patient care,” Russell Schuster, Cardinal Health Canada’s president, said in the announcement.

Headquartered in Vaughan, Cardinal Health's Canada division manufactures and distributes medical and surgical products across the country via eight distribution centres and one manufacturing facility.

It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Cardinal Health, Inc., a global firm which distributes pharmaceuticals and distributes and manufactures medical and laboratory products.

Cardinal Health (CAH-N) operates in over 30 countries and has approximately 46,500 employees globally.

The GTA distribution centre

The Concord centre will integrate automated technologies developed by Wilmington, Mass.-based Locus Robotics to deliver operational efficiencies as well as enhanced employee, customer and supplier experiences. 

Working with autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) means each employee stays within a specific zone in the facility which the company states will reduce physical labour while improving productivity.

For customers, the AMR implementation will increase picking and packing accuracy.

This is the third new distribution centre for Cardinal Health’s medical segment to be announced within North America since April this year.

The previous two opened in Groveport and Grove City in central Ohio, located about 24 kilometres apart just south of Columbus.

Together, they are more than 782,000 square feet.

The Groveport location will also be equipped with Locus Robotics technology and an innovation lab which is designed to test new technologies and streamline fulfillment processes.

The at-Home Solutions distribution centre in Grove City will act as a customer showcase location and it is the first Cardinal Health warehouse to feature AutoStore, an automated fulfillment technology from Swisslog.

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