Yodel unveils out-of-gauge parcel sorting machine

Yodel’s Merlin2 out of gauge sortation machine has been unveiled at its Shaw sorting centre.

The £1 million new machine can handle items of up to 1.8 metres long and 0.9 metres wide. It was built by Yodel’s engineers following the success of its Merlin sorting system in Wednesbury, installed in 2019.

Merlin2 can process up to 2,900, one metre long parcels an hour and operates alongside the fully automated sorting machine for in-gauge parcels at the Shaw site. The new sortation system ensures that items that had to be manually sorted at the site will now be scanned, weighed, volumised and photographed, with this data being fed automatically into the Yodel system for invoicing, tracking and of course sorting.

The growth in e-commerce also means that parcels of different sizes are being sent through carrier networks. The new out-of-gauge sorting system will allow Yodel to handle greater volumes of such items every day, facilitating growth and, according to the company, “supporting the trend that saw Yodel move into profit for the first time in 2021.”

Carl Moore, COO, Yodel explained: “Increasing visibility across our sorting process reduces opportunities for parcels to be misplaced and means packages can travel from our clients and to consumers much faster, meeting the greater demand for a more seamless service. The system’s design also makes for a safer work environment for our colleagues by reducing the physical demands of the work at our sort centres and reducing the risk of strain and injury.”

Mike Hancox, CEO, Yodel, commented: “Yodel has seen dramatic growth alongside much of the sector in the last year and a half. Expanding the Merlin system to more sort centers allows us to continue responding to the demands of the growing online retail market. By increasing visibility across our sorting process, we can strengthen Yodel’s position as the parcel carrier of choice.”

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