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Global sales of industrial robots head above $40bn

30 May, 2014

The global market for industrial robots will grow at an annual rate (CAGR) of 5.4% between 2013 and 2020, reaching a value of $41.17bn by the end of the decade, according to a new report from Allied Market Research. The market, which was worth $26.78bn in 2012, is being fuelled by a rapid growth in automation, coupled with a reduction of duties on refurbished goods in the Asia-Pacific region, says the report.

Articulated robots are best-selling type, accounting for almost half of sales ($12.97bn) in 2012, with usage increasing in sectors such as packaging and healthcare. The report predicts that sales of other types of robots, including customised and refurbished machines, will grow at significant pace in the coming years, due to an increasing demand from the Asia-Pacific region. It forecasts that sales of cylindrical and “other types” of robots will grow at a CAGR of 6.5% and 7.5%, respectively, over the period to 2020.

In 2012, the automotive industry dominated the global robot market with revenues worth $7.37bn. However, Allied expects a slowdown in the automotive industry to hold back the growth in sales of robots to the sector. It predicts that the food and beverage industry will achieve the highest growth rate (6.9%) over the forecast period.

Emerging markets for industrial robots include electronics and healthcare. For example “nanorobots”, which perform tasks such as mixing pharmaceutical compounds, are potentially attractive as they could help to cut lead times.

The food and beverage market is a growth area for industrial robots
Source: ABB

According to the report, materials-handling is the largest segment of the industrial robotics business, by function.

In 2012, Asia-Pacific was the biggest regional market for robots, accounting for 49.45% of global revenues. North America and Europe together accounted for more than a third of the market.

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