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A Robotic Warehouse in Roosendaal, Belgium

There is a growing demand for storage space in Belgium, with 600,000 new square meters expected to be built this year alone, or more than 1,644 square meters every day. Another 400,000 square meters are already planned for construction in the years 2021 and 2022. This increased demand for warehouse space is partly a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and partly because businesses have to develop strategic stocks. This is why Belgium is the perfect place for small warehouses.

Roosendaal warehouse

A 20,000 square meter, 75 tennis court-sized, small warehouse in Roosendaal, Belgium, is now manned by robots. Sixty-five robots work on the warehouse floor, bringing empty boxes to the human staff member who fills them. Another forty robots ride on a track seven metres above the floor, taking the required items from compartment walls. These robots, known as Active Ants, also help create a pleasant working environment.

Active Ants, a webshop fulfilment company, is now expanding its operations in Roosendaal to meet the needs of online stores. Established in 2010, Active Ants grew with the e-commerce revolution in Belgium, where one-third of companies with more than ten employees run their own webshop. In 2018 Bpost acquired 75% of the company and is now one of the leading hubs for e-commerce in Europe.

Roosendaal warehouse is a robot factory

Active Ants, a leading provider of third-party logistics solutions for e-commerce companies, uses more than sixty robots to help with its e-fulfillment center in Roosendaal, The Netherlands. The company’s robots use the GreyMatter operating system developed by MHI member GreyOrange. In the center, the robots are working alongside Human Ants employees. The robots, called Ranger MoveSmart robots, take boxes through various stages of packaging and sorting and then hand them off to employees, who select the correct products. The ranger robots outperform add-on robots and are a significant cost-saving factor for the e-fulfillment center.

The Roosendaal warehouse will be equipped with goods-to-man systems and three automated packaging machines. It will be able to process millions of packages annually and has a much higher output per square metre. Active Ants has updated its proprietary warehouse software to meet its goals. It is also set to implement artificial intelligence and robot technologies to improve the workflow of the warehouse. If all goes according to plan, the warehouse will be fully operational in the third quarter of 2020.

Roosendaal warehouse is tax exempt from Belgian VAT

You may wonder whether a Roosendaal warehouse is tax-exempt under the new Belgian VAT rules. Whether it is true, is it still possible to get the tax-free status? In the short term, yes. Belgium’s new rules on VAT, which applies to immovable rental properties, make the decision a little easier. For non-resident traders, this new rule is a welcome change.

The option only applies to buildings that are “newly constructed”. For example, if the building has undergone major refurbishment, the costs involved will be more than 60% of the building’s value. However, this option applies only to buildings where the construction costs are VAT-exempt from October 1, 2018. This regime is not available for buildings that have been subject to obligatory VAT.

Value-added logistics

Value-added logistics in Belgium refers to the sale and distribution of goods and services by companies that are PEs, or permanent establishments. Belgian tax law permits PEs to define their profit on a cost-plus basis and obtain an upfront ruling on a low markup. The purpose of this article is to describe the tax benefits associated with using value-added logistics in small warehouses in Belgium.

Developing value-added logistics services is increasingly becoming the key focus of companies operating in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries. However, few studies have explored how VALS can be implemented in small warehouses, particularly those that have little or no internal expertise in logistics. The location of a VALS will impact the configuration of the supply chain and the logistics costs involved. It is important to consider factors such as time and out-of-pocket expenses as well as the logistics characteristics of the products and services that are being handled.

Roosendaal warehouse has branches in the US, Spain and Vietnam

Yusen Logistics Benelux will open a new logistics warehouse in Gembloux, Wallonia. This move will position the Benelux region as a strategic healthcare logistics hub. In recent years, the company has added over 40,000 square meters of smart pharma space to its operations. It has also opened new warehouses in Antwerp, Herentals, and Roosendaal. Its Roosendaal warehouse will continue to grow.