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Marc Cain GmbH logistics centre in Bodelshausen

At its logistics centre in Bodelshausen, fashion brand Marc Cain has opted for its own local heating network with Viessmann Vitoflex 300-UF and a Vitobloc 200 EM-20/39 for power generation.

Marc Cain Logistics company building. Photo: © Carolin Julia Baker

Premium women's fashion brand opts for Viessmann energy system

The snow-white production, warehouse and administration buildings of Marc Cain GmbH are nestled in a park-like setting with English lawns and ponds. Here at the head office in Bodelshausen, not far from Tübingen, you can still find one of a small number of clothing companies that made the textile region of the Swabian Alb famous.

Founded in 1973, the company is a globally operating premium women's fashion brand with a proportion of its production operations in Germany, employing around 1000 people. Its selective distribution strategy includes 210 Marc Cain stores, 292 shop-in-stores, 397 account customers and a further 1087 upmarket specialist shops in 61 countries.

To ensure competitiveness, around 82 million euros were recently invested in administration, production and research and development. 35 million euros alone went into a state of the art logistics centre. A large proportion of this investment was assigned to the construction of a new energy centre at the company's head office in Bodelshausen. Now, thanks to a highly efficient energy system from Viessmann, the fashion manufacturer heats its buildings with renewable energy and also generates its own power.

On-site local heating replaces district heating

In 2015, the company switched over from the previous district heating provided by a local power supply utility to take advantage of its newly installed on-site heating centre, connected to a local heating network. "The district heating supply didn't work out the way we envisaged," explains Harald Scherm, who is responsible for building services at Marc Cain. "A decision was therefore taken to invest in our own local heating network at the same time as building our new logistics centre," Mr. Scherm continues. This network supplies the entire Marc Cain Campus which has a total floor space of over 55,000 square metres.

Viessmann Vitoflex 300-UF pellet boiler. Photo: © Carolin Julia Baker

Fully automatic pellet boiler covers the base heat load

In order to meet the requirements of the German Energy Saving Ordinance (EnEV), the company opted for biomass as the primary energy source right from the outset. According to the Ordinance, in new builds 25 percent of the energy required for heat generation must come from renewable resources.

A Vitoflex 300-UF pellet boiler with an output of 950 kilowatts was therefore able to meet the base load demand for heating energy and hot water. Automatic functions such as fuel feed, ash removal and pneumatic heating surface cleaning, together with sophisticated safety equipment, ensure convenient and safe operation, whilst the combination of innovative combustion technology and modulating output control enables efficiency levels of up to 95 percent to be achieved. A cyclone filter and an electrostatic filter retain all suspended particles in the flue gas, thereby ensuring low emissions. The fully automatic biomass boiler also offers maximum flexibility in terms of using different fuels. 

"Compared to woodchips, the use of pellets proved to be more maintenance friendly," says Harald Scherm, explaining the decision to use wood pellets as fuel. He continues: "Another advantage was that all Viessmann components were supplied from a single source." 

Peak loads are covered by a Vitocrossal 300 gas condensing boiler. The special design of its heat exchanger surfaces enables high outputs to be achieved whilst retaining compact dimensions and low weight. Four heating water buffer cylinders with a total volume of 20,000 litres were installed to store the generated heat. The hot water is supplied by a Vitocell 100-V DHW cylinder with a capacity of 300 litres. 

CHP and photovoltaics for self-generation

To enable the highest possible level of independence from the public grid, a Vitobloc 200 EM-20/39 CHP unit and a photovoltaic system with an output of 450 kWp were installed. The CHP unit with an electrical output of up to 20 kilowatts was supplied as a prefabricated compact module with the result that it could be commissioned very quickly. It is used to supply heat and electricity according to demand. With integrated condensing technology, it uses the heat contained in the exhaust gases and converts up to 95 percent of the fuel used into heat.

Fully networked with the building management system

All energy generators are networked into the building management system and can be operated and monitored remotely at any time.

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