And it’s China, ahead by a length in the robotic automation race
According to industry analysts never has a market seen such a “dynamic rise” in the installation of robots in such a short period of time as China.
Dressed in its familiar red and white silks, ABB Robotics clearly leads the pack since bolting out of the gate in China some 22 years ago, and is well positioned to help the Chinese government meet the ambitious goals of its Made in China 2025 plan.
The plan, which has received a great deal of notoriety of late, proposes the production of 100,000 industrial robots annually and having 150 robots in operation for every 10,000 employees by 2020, a figure commonly used when discussing robot density. Currently, China ranks 28th in the world for robot density, behind Portugal and Indonesia. Analysts expect the market for industrial robots to grow by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13 percent between 2017 and 2019. Further, Made in China 2025 is forecasted to drive tremendous growth of industrial robotics in the country, which analysts predict will account for 40 percent of the worldwide market volume in 2019.
Since 1994 ABB Robotics has led the field in China. It is the only multi-national robotics company to have established a complete value chain – locally — from R&D to manufacturing, application centers, service and spare parts. More than 90 percent of the robots in our extensive portfolio are manufactured in Shanghai, and 90 percent of those are sold in the Chinese market. Our moto there: In China for China and the World.
The changes since those early days has been quite dramatic. When I first started working with ABB in 2005, robots were seen as very high-tech, complicated and expensive machines that most people simply could not justify purchasing. Today, robots are on everyone’s mind and people are using them more and more because they are so much easier to use. The mindset has definitely changed as greater awareness about the efficiencies and quality improvements robots bring have become more widespread.
Just last month at the 18th annual China International Industrial Fair (CIIF) held in Shanghai, ABB Robotics announced that it has manufactured 50,000 robots in China. The milestone robot, an IRB 1200, was purchased by BYD Electronics, a world-leading vertically integrated provider of handset components and modules manufacturing and assembly services. The robot will be used at the consumer electronic giant’s plant in Huizhou in southern China for machining, polishing and assembly of mobile phones.
So, as ABB Robotics enters the backstretch on 2016, odds are that it will continue to wear the crown as it paves the way for Chinese manufacturers to a flexible and agile “Factory of the Future!”