Marina Grosso

29 November 2021

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CLS iMation: a technological vision that makes innovation easily within reach with #Touchinnovation

In its quest to set an example for innovation, CLS iMation showcased its technology  for the factory of tomorrow during the #Touchinnovation event


#Touchinnovation, the event organised by CLS iMation, the CLS business unit focusing on Intelligent Solutions for Logistics Automation, was more than just a showcase: it was a real demonstration of innovation and high-quality consulting. The important event held in Milan was the last leg of the roadshow consisting in a series of events held throughout Italy with a single common objective: showing companies, and allowing them to tangibly realise, that innovation can be a feasible, simple solution within reach, provided they rely on a strategic consultant such as CLS iMation. By doing so, they can change the way their company is managed and prepare to take the path to innovation.

Automation, digitalisation and innovation are just one step away with CLS iMation: the #Touchinnovation events offered a “tangible” opportunity to prove that the innovation of tomorrow can be embraced in a straightforward way, while generating high value-added solutions to make a company competitive, both locally and internationally.

“Due to the massive technological boom over the last decades, the factory of tomorrow arises to tackle a series of objective and continuously evolving needs. We are living in an era in which technology is becoming predominant and essential in everything we do, enabling us to innovate and improve our way of operating,” explained Michele Calabrese, iMation Business Unit Manager, as he introduced the innovative vision of the factory of tomorrow.


According to a study by the Boston Consulting Group, population degrowth often leads to a higher demand for labour, which is already generating crises and shortage of manpower, for example in countries such as Germany, but which will soon involve Italy as well. This is where the self-sufficient factory comes into play, through the use of advanced robotics technologies.


Integration, flexibility and modularity without bounds

The consulting shared by CLS iMation during the event revolved around systems for digitalising processes and controlling flows, in addition to advanced-robotics enabling technologies, which can be used to integrate functions in a straightforward and clear way, allowing the system to adapt to processes. “CLS iMation looked to correct the misconception whereby automation was perceived, until not long ago, as something that makes processes more rigid; on the other hand, today’s technology allows automation to be incorporated while maintaining processes flexible, scalable and modular to a degree that was previously unimaginable. Thanks to the advanced digitalisation of processes and the control of flows, we can increase productivity, quality and safety, while improving a company’s agility, that is, its ability to adapt and do so in a very short time. The end result is a factory and productive system that respond very swiftly to changes in the market,” continued Michele Calabrese.


The desire to respond to the rapid changes under way was precisely what led to the setting up of the CLS iMation business unit, which operates in Italy and internationally through a team of specialised engineers who work strategically on multiple levels: study and design, complete revision of processes and of new plants, the supply and implementation of handling solutions, as well as maintenance and assistance. The aim: to integrate systems for introducing automatic handling processes and to connect work centres.


“The core principles which CLS iMation relies on for introducing advanced technologies include flexibility, to respond to changes and various inputs without making processes more rigid, modularity, which ensures the continuity of systems, and scalability, enabling a pilot project to start very rapidly and personnel to focus on high value-added activities, thanks to real-time data on the entire work flow, improved quality of processes and a reduction in costs”, concluded Mr Calabrese.

The partnership with bridges the gap between automation and innovation thanks to the digitalisation of processes.


“The market expects greater reactivity and speed, while the engineering and technological complexity of products has increased; this has an impact on all production phases causing higher costs, while the market expects them to fall”, explained Alessandro Dandolo, Managing Director and Co-founder of

These were the reasons that led CLS and to team up in order to integrate and create a single hub of expertise and technologies for tackling these crucial issues for the factory of tomorrow. “Customers need a single and integrated solution, without having to manage various solutions proposed by different vendors, with different approaches and, above all, with a different distribution of responsibilities within processes that are not compatible with the company’s real needs. Our task is to optimise processes by introducing new approaches, new methodologies and new tools for redesigning them, while relying on efficiency for reducing costs but also increasing performances”, continued Mr Dandolo.


The intention is to cover the real needs of a production plant that decides to embrace digitalisation, transforming the facility into a real smart factory.


To demonstrate the quality of the consulting and the advantages offered by CLS iMation solutions, a tangible project devised by iMation specialists was presented in order to satisfy the needs of a food & beverage multinational company for its plant located in Belgium.

Completed in roughly two weeks during the pandemic, the project succeeded in making the company’s processes leaner and thus easily manageable, increasing productivity and decreasing the costs and waiting times. All of this was achieved thanks to the implementation of a truly customised turnkey system featuring innovative technologies such as collaborative robots and Agilox Intelligent Guided Vehicles, which are able to safely collaborate with operators and integrate with one another to complete goods handling, palletisation, depalletisation and storage tasks, taking charge of the automated logistics flows of the entire plant in a fully autonomous way.


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