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TECHNOLOGY

Macy’s opens high-tech distribution center—with some help from Google

BY Dan Berthiaume

Macy’s is leveraging cloud-based merchandising systems in a new Ohio-based facility.

The department store retailer is basing the technology infrastructure of its approximately 675,000-sq.-ft. distribution center in Columbus, Ohio on a Google Cloud platform. The existing Google Cloud user is deploying Google Cloud data warehousing and analytics solutions to help ensure that merchandise is accurately and efficiently received, sorted, ticketed, picked, packed and shipped from the distribution center to the stores. The retailer is opening the center in time for the peak retail seasons of back to school and the holidays.

Macy’s new warehouse management system will initially service more than 200 Macy’s Backstage off-price stores. The retailer will then begin rolling out the cloud platform to additional distribution centers that service its nationwide fleet of Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s department stores, as well as Macys.com and Bloomingdales.com direct-to-customer orders.

“Powered by software developed at Macy’s technology, this new distribution center is a fantastic first step in our cloud journey,” said Macy’s CTO Naveen Krishna. “Working with Google Cloud allows us to be more nimble, efficient and flexible in how we utilize our warehouses.”

Macy’s is applying cloud technology to its merchandising activities in the wake of disappointing second-quarter performance that included plummeting income. Other initiatives the retailer is launching in an effort to boost income include apparel resale and clothing rental.

Macy’s operates approximately 680 Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s, and 190 specialty stores including Bloomingdale’s The Outlet, Bluemercury and Macy’s Backstage. Through macys.com, bloomingdales.com, and bluemercury.com, it also serves online customers across more than 100 countries.

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