Arvato Systems Simulates the Performance Capacity of the Material Flow System

Boehringer Ingelheim microParts GmbH

Clear View of Performance Potential and Growth

Logo_Kunde_Boehringer Ingelheim Micropart

Arvato Systems' Logistics 4.0 portfolio incorporates a holistic, inexpensive planning approach for optimizing logistics processes in your company. We use tools such as modeling, animation, simulation, and emulation of logistic processes to achieve tangible results, from planning to commissioning.

Customer Benefits

Complete transparency regarding processes and strategies
Determination of actual system performance based on experiments
Development of optimization options and precise evaluation of achievable results regarding changes to handling technology or control strategies
Security in making investment decisions
Background Situation

Boehringer Ingelheim microParts GmbH, part of the Boehringer Ingelheim Group since 2004, produces the innovative pocket-sized Respimat® Soft Inhaler at its Dortmund location. The subsidiary guarantees Boehringer Ingelheim exclusive supply of the international market with an annual production capacity of 20 million inhalation devices. A total of €70 million was invested in the construction of a state-of-the-art nebulizer production plant. After annual production capacity doubled from ten to 20 million inhalers, the Dortmund facility had to come to grips with material flow logistics and the possibilities and limits of further expansion. The storage and material handling technology in the existing buildings were designed with the facility’s original processes and performance requirements in mind.


Boehringer Ingelheim microParts required expert knowledge of the existing material flow system, particularly with regard to system behavior of future processes and altered system loads, to be in a position to react properly to future developments. It did not take management long to realize that a detailed analysis based on static calculations would not be sufficient; instead, they needed to perform a simulation study. In order to obtain an independent evaluation of the performance capacity of the material flow system, the company decided to avail themselves of a service provider to carry out a material flow simulation, including a systems assessment, and offer recommendations.


Boehringer Ingelheim microParts commissioned Arvato Systems to perform a simulation analysis. Decisive factors in choosing Arvato Systems were our expertise in the planning of material flow systems, the application of intelligent IT tools, our hands-on approach, and high flexibility regarding the project schedule. Using the Sim3D Simulation 2010 simulator from Emulate3D Ltd., we mapped the existing material flow system on the basis of a high-rack warehouse, as well as consistent and inconsistent pallet materials handling.  To generate realistic behavior in a high-rack warehouse, we carried out controlled, product-specific inventory planning at various different production facilities. Pallets that had been stocked based on the FEFO (First Expired, First Out) principle were fed into the production lines, where they were either used or reassigned to the warehouse as partial pallets in the event of excess quantities. Using this method, all the necessary warehouse movements were simulated and extensively logged over a period of roughly three weeks. We then used the logs to graphically evaluate all the relevant operating figures that Boehringer Ingelheim microParts and Arvato Systems had defined at the start of the project.


The results of the simulation provided the perfect foundation for the subsequent planning stages. All of the decision-makers were won over very quickly thanks to the clarity of the presentation.

Boehringer Ingelheim microParts GmbH

A Reliable Performance Evaluation of The Material Flow System

The preparation, evaluation, and interpretation of key figures and time series was performed by Arvato Systems and then extensively discussed with the Boehringer Ingelheim microParts specialist department. As a result, we were able to establish the validity of the model that had been generated and identify potential for optimization after just a short period working together on the project. This potential was analyzed and then given to Boehringer Ingelheim microParts as a comparison of variants for internal discussion. In addition to the performance optimization that had been generated, the decision-makers also had access to a reliable performance evaluation of the material flow system, also based on the simulation study, to assist them in future investment decisions.

About Boehringer Ingelheim microParts GmbH

Experts in innovative inhalers: Boehringer Ingelheim microParts GmbH, part of the Boehringer Ingelheim Group since October 2004, produces the innovative pocket-sized Respimat® inhaler at its Dortmund location. The device incorporates microstructured pumps and nozzles to ensure a high level of performance capacity. Boehringer Ingelheim microParts GmbH guarantees its parent company Boehringer Ingelheim exclusive supply of the international market with an annual production capacity of 44 million inhalation devices.

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Your Contact for Boehringer Ingelheim microParts

Andreas Maas
Expert in Logistics IT for the Retail & Consumer Goods Industry