DHL kicks off logistics innovation contest


DHL has launched its second Innovation Challenges event and is calling for students, start-ups and inventors worldwide to submit their ideas for two logistics-related challenges.

Participants are invited to either develop a prototype of a mobile piece picking robot or develop a solution to a logistics problem using a sharing economy business model, platform or concept.

Participants can submit a written document and video explaining their idea until September through the competition’s website:

Entries will be reviewed by senior DHL executives in a pre-selection process. Three finalists of each challenge will be chosen, whose concepts meet the criteria of functionality, aesthetics, potential to solve the given problem and commercial feasibility. The nominees will present their solutions in front of 180 senior supply chain professionals and trend experts at the DHL Innovation Day in Germany on November 16.

Winners will be selected in a live-voting process while the two top scorers will share the €20,000 ($28,000) prize pool and will have their concepts displayed at the DHL Innovation Centre in Germany and Singapore.

“We estimate that the implementation of robotics will be the norm in the industry within less than five years. Their application will facilitate the order picking process and relieve warehouse staff from carrying heavy weight and manually pushing trolleys through the rack systems,” said Matthias Heutger, Senior Vice President Strategy, Marketing & Innovation, DHL Customer Solutions & Innovation. “At DHL, we encourage concepts that support employees in daily operations and unburden them from physical strain.”