Sagawa Express Partners with Sumitomo and Dexterity to Pioneer Robotic Truck Loading in Japan
Japanese Parcel Leader to Leverage AI in Closing Transportation and Logistics Gap Predicted for 2030
Tokyo, 10 January 2024 - SG Holdings Co., Ltd. (SG Holdings),Sagawa Express Co., Ltd. (Sagawa Express), Sumitomo Corporation (Sumitomo), and Dexterity Inc. (Dexterity) announced a partnership to leverage AI-powered robots to load parcel trucks in Japan.
As a part of the partnership, Sagawa Express, one of Japan’s leading logistics and delivery service providers, will begin harnessing Dexterity’s AI technology to power robots capable of loading trucks with randomized boxes. Before scaling deployment, Dexterity’s AI will learn from Sagawa Express's logistics operations, ensuring that Dexterity’s dual-arm robot - the DexR - will fit seamlessly into Sagawa's existing logistics infrastructure.
Japan’s declining labor force is anticipated to impact many sectors and may lead to a 35% transportation capacity shortage by 2030. Sagawa initiated this partnership, hoping to mitigate this shortfall by using robots to tackle the most physically demanding tasks facing their team.
“Sagawa’s core vision means that packages must be delivered quickly and with care. Our manual truck loaders have been at the forefront of providing this experience for our customers,” said Sagawa Express General Manager of Operations Seiichi Watanabe. “The physical challenges associated with loading and declining labor force in Japan mean we must use innovation to help our operations team handle the toughest challenges in parcel distribution. By leveraging Dexterity’s advanced AI technology, our team will be able to focus on higher value-add tasks without interrupting our operations.”
Working together with Sumitomo, an exclusive distributor of Dexterity in Japan, the truck loading partnership will start in 2024 with a plan to integrate into Sagawa’s newest distribution center following a successful first pilot.
Dexterity previously announced its DexR mobile truck loading robot in September. The robot’s unique dual-arm design and onboard AI enable it to match operational loading speeds and packing requirements without knowing the size, weight, or shape of boxes before they arrive at the robot - a process described as “playing 3D Tetris with up to 50lb boxes.”
“Sagawa shares our vision of supply chain innovation in Japan,” said Samir Menon, founder and CEO of Dexterity AI. “With our shared approach to skill-rich, adaptable robots, Sagawa, Sumitomo, and Dexterity will help close the transportation and logistics capacity gap predicted for 2030.”
The partnership builds upon Dexterity and Sumitomo’s previously announced partnership to deploy 1,500 robots in Japanese warehouses by 2026. For more information, visit http://www.dexterity.ai