Published On : Sat, Apr 29th, 2017

Big Bazaar’s fully automated Distribution centre in MIHAN launched – it cannot get bigger than this!!

Future group CEO Kishor Biyani and Union Minister Nitin Gadkari launched India’s most automated and biggest Distribution centre in MIHAN today. It is run by a technology, developed by Beumer group, India, called High Speed Cross Belt Sortation Technology.

The S bridge of Distribution!

To understand how this technology operates, just think of the designer S bridge that is built at the gateway of MIHAN itself. It takes the traffic of cars coming from either Nagpur or Wardha/ Hyderabad side and sorts it into lanes going to Bhandara, Raipur, Jabalpur, Nagpur, Wardha, Hyderabad or MIHAN which a driver can take to reach his desired destination.


The humongous, larger than you can imagine, warehouse of Future group, which is spread over 4 lakh square feet of area and has volume of 8 lakh square feet and that stores, sorts and merchandise going to over 1000 Big Bazaar outlets in India has automated conveyer belts that send that right T shirt to the right store in a similar fashion to this bridge.


This centre, which began operations 4 years ago, already had a semi automated conveyor system which any human could operate with just 30 minutes of training – but the new system takes it to another level of automation making the sorting 3 times faster.

It comprises of a 12 metres high Spiral conveyor, which is tallest in the country, with approx. 2.5 Kms of conveyor system. This ‘infrastructure’ can sort 40,000 cases per day which translates to 360 crore pieces per annum!!

While inaugurating this new system Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, who was logically the perfect man to do it, said that for India to withstand in the international markets our logistics cost needs to be brought down from 18%, to match China’s 6%.

“To achieve this, we need to scale up our production, make our distribution faster and drastically reduce our cost of transport. To this end my Ministry is trying to introduce and popularize water ways transport – through rivers – followed by Rail transport.”

Gadkari said through rivers cost of transport could come down to 20 paisa per per Km. which is over Rs. 1.50 by highways at present.

He also rued the fact that of the approximately 96,000 Kms of highway network the country has, only 2% consists of national highways which take the load of 40% of our traffic.

“This leads to too many road accidents, in which we lose 1.5 lakh lives every year!”

He said his Ministry plans to substantially increase the network of national highways by building 10 new Express ways between big cities, work on 4 has already begun. He has plans for 2 lakh Kms of new roads.

Turning to Kishor Biyani, Gadkari challenged ” be prepared with 40 tons containers for transport of your goods, which should be equipped to run not on diesel or petrol but LPG and bio fuels which will bring down cost of transport.”

River transport and Ports

Coming back to his pet project of river transport and development of Ports he said under his Ministry the Mumbai port has shown profits of Rs. 6000 crores per annum already, up from Rs. 5000/.

“So impressed are international banks by our performance that when I visited Singapore recently, financiers and bankers were queuing up to offer me ‘cheap’ loans at just 2.25% interest! I will bring it down to 2%.” Gadkari promised.

He said river transport between Varanasi and Haldia, in West Bengal, has begun already and automobiles are being transported by ships driving down the cost of a car by Rs. 300/.

Gadkari said that India had the tragedy of being a rich nation with poor people and this poverty could be allayed only with more employment which only industries can bring.

Corruption by babus and cartels by companies will be dealt with severely.

“We will do everything we can to boost industrial growth beginning with rooting out of corruption. ‘Babus’ coming with demands of ‘envelopes’ will be rooted out of the system and severely punished.”

“At the same time” he said ” industries forming cartels to ensure high and unreasonable profits will also be severely punished.”

He cited the case of cement factories who has suddenly hiked up their rates as the momentum of building cement roads has increased across the nation.

“My Ministry is the largest purchaser of cement and I am determined to teach this manufacturers a lesson.”

Gadkari expressed confidence that the Rs. 1000 crores Future group will grow to Rs. 10,000 crores soon.

“But you must keep the focus on Nagpur and give employment to my young people of this area” he almost pleaded.

We love Nagpur, said Biyani

Speaking at the inaugural function and also separately to Nagpur Today, Kishor Biyani, the iconic CEO of the Future group emphasized that he loved Nagpur and had seen its potential as a distribution hub even before GST came in.

He said the new technology harnessed at Nagpur was first of its kind in India and would be a game changer making it India’ most automated ‘GST ready’ distribution centre.

Our distribution hub at Nagpur – which consists of not one, but five units like this – is the nerve centre of our operations, he said.

Biyani also shared exclusively with NT that his company plans to go into production of food products and are looking at MIHAN as a likely place for it.
Future Group