California-based WineDirect selects VARGO® and COFE® for newest facility

New wine e-commerce fulfillment center slated to open in summer

HILLIARD, Ohio (June 6, 2017) — VARGO®, a leading provider of material-handling system integration, warehouse execution software and equipment solutions for major fulfillment and distribution centers, is proud to announce that it has been chosen to design and build a waveless material handling system for WineDirect’s new fulfillment center in the Napa Valley region of California.

WineDirect, headquartered in Napa Valley, is the leader in direct-to-consumer services for wineries and is the only company that offers a complete end-to-end platform to support direct sales. More than 1,300 wineries and wine retailers use WineDirect’s services to support their e-commerce and order-fulfillment needs. In addition to its California fulfillment centers, WineDirect also has a fulfillment center in Glenwillow, Ohio, in northeast Ohio.

“VARGO® is excited to be an integral part of WineDirect’s growing direct-to-consumer platform and proud that COFE® can help them fulfill their goal of exceeding customers’ expectations to be able to place an order one day and have it delivered within two days,” said Michael Vargo, President of VARGO® Companies. “What’s most impressive is that the new facility will help WineDirect ship three times the volume in half the time.”
The new 268,000-square-foot, high-tech fulfillment center in American Canyon, Calif., is slated to go live in late summer 2017. The facility has three times the floor space of WineDirect’s existing American Canyon fulfillment center. The ever-growing direct-to-consumer (DTC) wine business drove the company to the point of needing another facility.

“The direct-to-consumer wine channel grew 17% in 2016 and is poised for explosive growth in the next few years,” said Joe Waechter, President and CEO of WineDirect. “At the same time, consumer expectations for fast, easy shipping are rising quickly. Our new fulfillment center is designed to enable wineries to deliver an incredible customer experience so that they can take full advantage of the DTC growth opportunity.”

The new fulfillment center will be driven by VARGO®’s Continuous Order Fulfillment Engine (COFE®) warehouse execution system. COFE®’s real-time warehouse execution system synchronizes and sequences
activities across all work resources — the material handling equipment, devices, people and processes. With COFE®, WineDirect will be able to fulfill orders in an expedient manner, allowing fulfillment center employees to pick and fill orders in the shortest amount of time to get them out the door before a shipping cutoff time.

“We absolutely love working with VARGO® and we could not have selected a better partner,” said Karin Ballestrazze, Senior Vice President, Fulfillment Operations at WineDirect. “The new material handling system will bring incredible benefit to our winery clients — especially as we head into the busy holiday shipping season. Our whole team is very much looking forward to launch.”

Ground broke on the new facility last fall and work is expected to continue through the summer. The center is scheduled to begin operations in August.