Material Handling Equipment Market for Assembly Line Vehicle AGV, By Industry, 2017–2025

February 21 20:58 2020
Material Handling Equipment Market for Assembly Line Vehicle AGV, By Industry, 2017–2025
The automated material handling (AMH) equipment market to grow from USD 33.46 billion in 2018 to USD 53.59 billion by 2024 at a CAGR of 8.2%.

The key factors driving the growth of the market include growing presence of start-up companies offering robotic solutions for warehouse automation, increasing popularity of AMH equipment among leading industries, significant recovery in global manufacturing, and rising labor cost and safety concerns. However, high upfront cost of AMH equipment for SMEs, and high integration and switching costs are the key restraining factors for market growth.

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Driver: Growing presence of start-up companies offering robotic solutions for warehouse automation

After the successful implementation of mobiles robots by Amazon (US) in its warehouses for the pick-and-place operations, several companies have shifted their focus on implementing mobile robots in their logistics operations. Moreover, the evolution of the goods-to-person concept and robotics-enabled order fulfilment has further fueled the demand for mobile robots in warehousing operations. In the past few years, there has been a significant increase in the number of start-up companies in the mobile robotics ecosystem. Fetch Robotics (US), IAM Robotics (US), Magazino (Germany), 6 River Systems (US), GreyOrange (Singapore), Locus Robotics (US), Geek+ (China), and InVia Robotics (US) are a few of of the fastest-growing start-up companies in this ecosystem. These players are offering cost-effective, flexible, and efficient mobile robots, which can be used for automating various warehouse operations, such as storage and retrieval, transportation, and packaging. Furthermore, the favorable environment created by venture capitalists for investments is encouraging the mobile robotics start-ups to develop new products. For instance, in April 2018, 6 River Systems (US) raised the Series B funding of USD 25 million with Menlo Ventures (US), which is a firm specializing in providing capital to the start-up companies.

Restraint: High upfront cost of AMH equipment for SMEs

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) contribute a significant share to the growth and development of an economy of any country. SMEs provide the necessary raw materials and components to big enterprises. Therefore, material handling operations play an important role in the supply chain of these SMEs. However, the high upfront cost required for installing AMH equipment keeps SMEs from fully automating their supply chain activities. For instance, an average cost of AGV ranges from USD 20,000 to USD 40,000. Small enterprises cannot afford the automated systems and hence opt for traditional/manual material handling process. The high cost discourages small companies from choosing high-end AMH systems, which is restraining the growth of this market. Some of the large enterprises cut down the upfront cost by renting industrial trucks, purchasing equipment on lease, and choosing second-hand equipment. This is expected to hamper the sales of new equipment.

Opportunity: Increasing level of order customization and personalization

As the preference for customized and personalized product orders is increasing among online buyers, e-commerce companies are finding it difficult to process the complex orders through manual processes. Moreover, the customers expect the delivery of these customized orders at low prices and with same delivery speeds as of normal orders. The increasing popularity of customized orders has propelled the manufacturing plant and warehouse operators to increase the efficiency and speed of their picking and sorting processes to achieve business success. Further, the manual processing of customized orders increases the probability of error due to the added complexity. AMH systems such as robotic pickers, Automated Guided Vehicle (AGV), Automated Storage & Retrieval Systems (ASRS), automated forklift, automated pallet jack, automated racking system, automated sorters, and conveying systems can help handle the customized orders at a faster rate, along with reducing the error rate to a great extent.

Challenge: Loss in production and revenue due to unwanted equipment downtime

The breakdown or failure of AMH equipment can have a significant impact on the overall earnings of the companies as it causes delay in the entire production process. It further causes the loss of production and plant performance. In the capital-intensive industries, such as automotive, the interrupted production may cost an average of USD 22,000 per minute to the company. Therefore, such companies need to invest heavily in preventive maintenance of their AMH equipment to prevent such unwanted downtime and ensure smooth functioning of the equipment.

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