Merck, a German leader in the development of technology for chemical and pharmaceutical solutions for Healthcare, Life Science and Performance Materials, has re-designed their DC in Mexico in order to complete consolidation of logistics operations of Sigma-Aldrich across multiple Latin American countries. The American company Sigma-Aldrich is dedicated to the chemical and pharmaceutical manufacturing of research material and was acquired by Merck in late 2015.

Merck contracted Miebach Consulting Mexico to select the best alternative for consolidating logistics operations in the distribution center in Mexico. The analysis was based on different business scenarios, to size the future capacity of the DC, and to estimate a level of investment for the selected solution, considering the national and international safety standards for storage and handling of hazardous and non-hazardous products.

According to Thalia Bernal, Head of Merck Sub-Region Mexico - ISC Operations, to collaborate with Miebach Consulting in this important project was a positive experience, also because of the commitment of Miebach for the project despite schedule restrictions. Miebach's experience in similar projects in other countries handling hazardous products also represented a guarantee in obtaining the desired results. The solution will enable the required storage conditions, covering the safety requirements, the expected sales growth, and providing better service for the benefit of Merck's customers.

Within the scope of the project, inbound and outbound flows of Merck and Sigma-Aldrich, as well as the stock and the number of positions, were analyzed. After assessing the current situation, the volume of the operation was brought to future scenarios for the years 2020 and 2024 for each type of product and business unit. These were made in order to analyze different integration scenarios, their impact on built-up areas, as well as investments.

Different layout alternatives and a masterplan were developed considering rooms for dangerous products and for temperature controlled materials, as well as storage areas of high density and of small products. Guidelines of safety, health and environment such as EHS, local rules (NOM), international rules (NFPA) and also corporative Merck guidelines were taken as a basis. After validation of these layouts, the estimation of investment was evaluated. It was identified that between the different scenarios there was only a 7% difference in total costs of the warehouse.

For more information about the project, please contact Jorge Ribas (ribas@miebach.com).

For further information on Merck's acquired company Sigma-Alderich, please visit the company's website.