Industrial Robot Sales Broke Records in 2018

Industrial Robot Sales Broke Records in 2018Industrial robot sales saw record highs in the first three quarters of 2018, especially when looking at orders to non-automotive companies, according to the latest numbers from the Robotics Industries Association (RIA).

Over the past few decades, the demand for industrial robots has steadily grown and their presence in a wide range of markets has expanded. The latest stats reveal this trend continuing in a powerful way, setting the stage for continued growth in the future. 

Industrial Robot Highlight: Non-Automotive Orders Gain Market Share

Historically, the automotive industry (OEMs and tier suppliers) has accounted for over 60% of the North American robotics market, but as of September 2018, this number has decreased to 52%. This leaves 48% of orders being placed in the non-automotive sector – the closest the two segments have ever been since 1984.

Overall, 22,078 industrial robots, valued at $1.31 billion, were ordered in the first 9 months of 2018. While this was down 17% in units and 11% in revenue from the previous year, orders to non-automotive companies surged 24% over 2017 levels.

Among the notable gains were the life sciences industry, which grew 30% over last year, the food and consumer goods industry with growth at 24%, the plastics and rubber industry that grew 16%, and the electronics industry with 14% growth in robot sales.

Industrial Robots Continue to Grow

The RIA believes that as robots have become more dexterous, safer, and available in a variety of form factors, they’ve become more appealing to new users in an ever-expanding variety of industries. Essentially, robots are becoming more capable and more profitable, and more companies in a wider range of industries are realizing their potential value.

Orders for automotive robots represent a cyclical swing, and overall the interest in industrial robot technologies throughout the industrial sector continues to grow. This past year is merely a continuation of a long-building trend of increasingly automated production in a number of different sectors.

To learn more on this topic, read the press release regarding RIA’s latest statistics on industrial robot sales.