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Linde and Balyo enter into a strategic partnership

Linde and Balyo seal cooperation - strategic partnership
Having entered into a strategic partnership, the working relationship is sealed by Linde Material Handling’s Chief Sales Officer, Christophe Lautray (left) and Balyo’s Chief Executive Officer, Fabien Bardinet.

Linde Material Handling (MH) and robotics specialist Balyo last month agreed to enter into a strategic partnership.

With this cooperation, Linde MH seeks to intensify its activities in the field of robotic industrial vehicles, while Balyo aims to achieve a significant market penetration for its innovative technological solutions. The two companies are planning to collaborate in development, manufacture and sales under the umbrella of Linde Robotics, which is expected to extend Linde MH’s solution expertise in this field.

The demand for automated industrial vehicles is growing steadily. In particular, operators of warehouse units want to standardise their in-house material flow by deploying semi- or fully automatic solutions, which will enable them to use their equipment flexibly regardless of work-time specifications, as well as to prevent incorrect operation and accident risks, and reduce personnel costs too.

‘Our aim is to extend our range of automation solutions to offer our customers solutions that have different levels of complexity. With Balyo we were able to persuade the technology leader in robotics for materials handling equipment to cooperate exclusively with us so that we can now combine the best of both worlds,’ says Christophe Lautray, Chief Sales Officer at Linde MH, who is convinced that the envisaged close cooperation will be successful.

‘Our plan is to integrate Balyo’s innovative technology into most of our products step by step, whilst utilising synergies in production and sales at the same time.’

Fabien Bardinet, CEO of Balyo, explains the decision to start this joint development with the industrial vehicle manufacturer: ‘Linde MH is the European market leader in industrial vehicles and comprises great product knowledge and a very densely knit consulting and service network. For us, they are the ideal partners to create the most advanced robots to serve best our common customers.

‘At Balyo, we produce a unique driving system for materials handling, and together with Linde MH we will offer solutions to help our customers optimise their in-house material flows and achieve major cost savings.’

Based on standard Linde vehicles, robots driven by Balyo technology do not require any navigation infrastructure such as laser reflectors, tracks or magnets. Rather, they use an embedded autonomous laser-assisted technology, which relies on structural features such as walls, racks or columns. This exclusive technology allows a fast and easy installation process.

First, the warehouse is charted and the data is converted into a two-dimensional map. Next the order of the routes through the warehouse and the tasks assigned to the robots are defined. Equipped with laser, processor unit and digitised map, the vehicle locates itself in real time.

Changes in the warehouse, tasks or routes can be implemented at any time very simply. A comprehensive software suite ensures a full integration in the warehouse environment, including connection of the robots to WMS and ERP, and a simple control of the robots for the warehouse operators via an intuitive user interface.

The new robot family comes with a very advanced security solution allowing an easy cooperation with the operators and an automatic restart of the vehicle after a previously detected obstacle has been removed and the route is clear again. Contrary to other solutions, the robots analyse in 3D their environment and can restart autonomously.

About Balyo

Balyo designs, manufactures and markets robotic handling solutions for the manufacturing and logistics sectors. The company’s innovative solution is revolutionising the materials handling world. Their technology can be found throughout Europe and is now available in North America, through Balyo Inc. Balyo’s expert teams help customers leverage the technology, integrate the solution, reduce costs, and achieve superior returns. From the identification of potential productivity gains to the design of optimum processes, and their implementation, Balyo partners with its customers for maximum benefit. Since its establishment, Balyo’s growth rate has exceeded 100% per annum. With the financial backing from prestigious venture capital firms, and armed with truly innovative technology, the company is re-writing the materials handling book.

Tristan Wiggill
Special Features Editor at Business Fleet Africa