io-consultants – company chronicle

Since our company was founded in 1958, we have completed a steady stream of outstanding projects – some of them award-winning. Our clientele ranges from upper mid-sized German companies to global corporations. Across the world, we provide consulting services to six of the ten leading international pharmaceutical companies, three of the world’s top ten car manufacturers, five of the twenty largest airlines, five of the ten biggest consumer goods manufacturers, and nine of the top twenty Germany mechanical and plant engineering firms. Altogether, we have completed more than 5000 successful projects around the globe.

Highlights of our company history:

 

1958

1958

Foundation

Foundation of the company in Heidelberg as i+o industry planning and organisation. Our guiding principle is “form and function in concert”.

1964

1964

Planning of the first high-bay warehouse for Beiersdorf AG, Hamburg.

1967

1967

Planning of a central packaging and supply structure for Schering AG, Berlin. The idea of functional industrial planning soon took off and became our “hallmark”. Functional industrial planning generated substantial productivity benefits over conventional factory planning.

1970s

1970s

Planning of the first project for an academic institution: a food catering facility for the University of Mannheim. This was followed by the student cafeteria in Heidelberg, which produces around 3,600 meals a day, then Erlangen, Regensburg, and many more.

1970s

1970s

Construction of the first GMP-compliant pharmaceuticals plant for Asta Medica AG in Künsebeck, followed by projects for TROPON (now Meda Manufacturing GmbH), Klinge Pharma GmbH, and many more medium-sized pharmaceutical firms.

1970s

1970s

Planning of the central company cafeteria for F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd. in Basel, with state-of-the-art, IT-supported serving, returns and accounting systems. What began as a secondary project to complement our work, which until then had primarily focussed on factory planning, later led to one of our strongest fields of expertise, Communal Catering.

1970s

1970s

Application of i+o’s catering expertise to hospital supply centre services, such as laundry technologies, general material supplies, pharmaceuticals supplies, and central sterilisation.

 

1970s

1970s

Planning of “Germany’s largest washing machine” – start of a pilot project at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf for a highly automated central laundry for all Hamburg clinics.

1972

1972

Establishment of our subsidiary, PhC Pharma Consult.

1980

1980

“The launch of the ‘production warehouse’: i+o transfers the concept of ‘production warehouses’ to the mechanical engineering and automobile industries. ‘Production warehouse’ means that all in-house manufactured parts and all purchased items are placed in a central warehouse before being supplied to the assembly lines. So far, this concept has been realised at several Mercedes-Benz AG sites – e.g. in Untertürkheim (engine warehouse), Wörth and Hamburg-Harburg (both production warehouses), at SEW near Heidelberg, and MTU in Friedrichshafen (high-bay warehouse and automatic small parts warehouse).” Source: Chronik einer Branche (‘Chronicle of an industry’), in Materialfluss (‘Material flow’) magazine for intralogistics, 1994.

1980

1980

A project for tyre manufacturer Semperit AG kicks off our activities in the automobile industry, with follow-on projects for DaimlerChrysler in Wörth, VDO Babenhausen, VW in Emden, and many more.

1980s

1980s

First project in planning highly complex in-flight catering facilities at airports, for Sky Chefs in the USA. Today, we are the worldwide market leader in this field. Many prestigious airlines such as British Airways, SAS, Swiss Air, Singapore Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Hong Kong Airlines, and Korean Air now count among our clients.

1980s

1980s

Implementation of a central warehouse for finished goods, for Colgate-Palmolive GmbH in the port of Hamburg. The fully automatic connection to production via an electric monorail system was unique at the time.

1983

1983

Foundation of “i+o Informationssysteme GmbH”, coinciding with the introduction of a new generation of process computers for production and logistics process planning and management.

1990

1990

Consistent growth necessitates relocating to larger premises in Heidelberg’s Römerstrasse.

1996

1996

Establishment of our Singapore office, to improve access to new markets in Southeast Asia.

1997

1997

Our project for Bosch-Siemens Hausgeräte GmbH wins the German Logistics Prize, awarded by the German Logistics Association.

1997

1997

Planning of the world’s largest in-flight catering facilities of the time, for Cathay Pacific Catering Services (initially designed for 60,000 meals per day), at Chek Lap Kok island airport, Hong Kong. In 2012, CPCS commissioned us again to extend the facilities to cater for 140,000 meals per day (daily production had already risen to 85,000 meals).

2000s

2000s

Implementation of the largest fully automated high-bay warehouse to date, with 132,000 pallet spaces for Tchibo AG’s consumer items, operated by Bremer Lagerhausgesellschaft (BLG).

2003

2003

Automotive supplier Faurecia Automotive Seating  receives “Factory of the Year” award in the category “Performance Standards and Performance Management” for the facilities in Neuburg a. d. Donau planned by i+o.

2004

2004

Audi’s new tool shop in Ingolstadt – realised by i+o in its role as lead consultant – receives the “Tool Shop of the Year” award. Beforehand, i+o had already won the architecture contest for the plant design.

2004

2004

2005

2005

Implementation of the world’s first paperless pharmaceutical factory for B. Braun AG.

2006

2006

Establishment of our office in Bethlehem, PA, USA.

2007

2007

2008

2008

Jubilee year – celebration of our 50th anniversary.

2008

2008

Planning of the European Spare Parts Centre for MTU GmbH (now Rolls-Royce Power Systems) in Überlingen on Lake Constance – from strategy through to standard operations. The warehouse is one of the first logistics centres worldwide to be fully run by SAP EWM.

2008

2008

The International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE) presents our client Pfizer with the Facility of the Year Award 2008, in the categories “Process Innovation” and “Overall Winner”.

2010

2010

Development of an integrated building concept – encompassing plant and process technologies and logistics – for the new production facilities at JZJT (Jiangzhong Corporation) in China. The exceptional architecture was specially designed to blend in with the landscape. The fully greened roof not only serves as insulation and promotes energy savings, but can also be walked on.

2012

2012

The in-flight catering facilities planned by i+o for Oberoi Flight Services at Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi receive the Future Kitchen Award in acknowledgement of i+o’s excellent planning and implementation of an energy-efficient and sustainably designed commercial kitchen .

2012

2012

Rentschler Biotechnologie receives the Facility of the Year Award 2012 in the category “Equipment Innovation” for its new production facilities, in recognition of i+o’s flexible plant concept that reduced manufacturing costs and product cycle times. The prize was awarded by the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE).

2013

2013

On 1 January 2013, we change our company name to io-consultants. From now on, all our international sites operate under the same name. At the same time, PhC PharmaConsult GmbH is merged into the mother company. We also establish our site in Hong Kong and relocate to our current location, Heidelberg’s Bahnstadt district, one of Germany’s most state-of-the-art passive house estates.

2013

2013

Project kick-off of the after-sales strategy for the BMW Group: io-consultants plans three new BMW sites in Bavaria with around 300,000 sqm of new logistics space as well as worldwide continental warehouses and regional distribution centres.

2013-2018 (estimated)

2013-2018 (estimated)

Development begins for an overall master plan encompassing the logistics, process planning and architecture for new production facilities and an R&D centre for Chengdu Baiyu Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., China. Once again, the architecture is an outstanding feature of this project: the building spans seven floors, all with curved glass facades, and has a hanging garden terrace on the roof of the research building.

2014

2014

Our Global Parts System (PAS) project for Rolls-Royce Power Systems initiates the modernisation of the latter’s worldwide after-sales logistics. It includes the setup of three continental warehouses in the USA, Europe and Asia, and the conversion to a ground-breaking supply chain management system with identical processes in a global SAP EWM roll-out.

2014

2014

Planning of a high-performance logistics centre (>7,000 items/hr) for Adolf Würth KG, including high-automation facilities, a pick-and-pack solution, and automatic, folding-arm robot-controlled layer palletisers.

2016

2016

Deutsche SiSi-Werke Betriebs GmbH (Capri-Sun) opens its top-performance matrix high-bay warehouse with an orbiter channel storage system, planned by io-consultants. The facilities are so fast that from-bin transfers only need to be activated when the truck driver reports at the site gates.

2017

2017

Establishment of our office in Munich, Germany, managed by Simon Löwisch and Christian Schindler.