Industrial Robots in China 2020

China has become the largest robot market in the world since 2013. Despite the already high sales level, robot sales rose again by 28 percent last year. The International Federation of Robotics (IFR) expects that China will be responsible for 40 percent of the worldwide demand by 2019.

Our newest research supports this assessment. The growth momentum will continue in 2017 and beyond, according to the judgment of experts from leading foreign and Chinese robot manufacturers, component suppliers and system integrators, with whom we spoke for this report. Rising labor costs, a still low level of automation as well as the increasing abilities of intelligent and collaborative robot solutions will fuel this growth - not to mention the ambitious goals of the Chinese government.

At the same time, the market is still very fragmented and intransparent. According to the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the number of companies in the robot sector has risen from just under 300 to more than 3,400 since 2012. Many of them are small companies with limited prospects for the future, but powerful players from the traditional mechanical engineering industry or dynamic Internet companies are still entering this field.

In this context, foreign suppliers of robot and automation technology have to be particularly concerned with the following questions: Which are the relevant companies and what are their strengths and weaknesses? How will the overall market develop and to what degree can we predict growth and structural changes in its sub-segments? Who are the right partners?

Therefore, we elaborated the report at hand. It is based on our many years of experience in the Chinese automation market. It has a modular structure and consists of the following parts, which are available separately:

1      Market analysis industrial robots in China

2.1 Macro-perspective

  • Which segments and applications are growing? What types of robots with which specifications will be on demand?
  • How is the share of foreign vs. domestic robots changing? How are domestic manufacturers catching up? What drives the domestic development?
  • Critical acclaim of government plans: Will the growth goals of the 13th Five-Year-Plan for the robotics industry be achieved?How will the subsidies develop and which impact will this have on robotics sales?
  • Scenarios for the expected market consolidation: How will this process look like? E.g. which standards are currently drafted by the government for the support of robotics companies? Which form will dominate – horizontal or vertical consolidation?

2.2 Relevant manufacturers of industrial robots

In an extensive research process, we identified the relevant manufacturers of industrial robots (Multi-joint robots, collaborative robots, SCARA robots, coordinate/gantry robots, parallel/delta robots, AGVs). 

The report covers the 39 most relevant manufacturers of industrial robots in China. Details are provided in depth along the following key-issues:

  • Facilities and production locations in China
  • Size (number of employees, revenue and robots sold 2016)
  • Product portfolio
  • Major products and sales markets
  • R&D capabilities
  • Strengths and weaknesses
  • M&A, other important recent events, etc.

2      System integrator database

Over 80 percent of the robots in the Chinese market are sold through system integrators. They are essential partners for vendors of automation equipment, as well as for manufacturing enterprises looking for the right suppliers to enable their automation projects in China.

While most of these companies are small and very specialized firms, there have others emerged with several thousand employees. Some of them have set up branches in Europe and Northern America to serve their international customers overseas.

In an extensive research process, we identified the relevant companies in this area. Details are provided in depth along the following key-issues:

  • Contact information
  • Size (number of employees, revenue)
  • Sales industries
  • Customer base
  • Reference projects with OEM brands or product/service information

The database comes as an Excel file and contains 305 system integrators. Of them, 277 are active in the field of robotics, 72 serve robotics as well as various software areas and 23 are pure software system integrators.

In addition to the integrated database, which contains all described system integrators, the report classifies them into the following groups: 

  • Integrators with focus on the automotive industry
  • Integrators with focus on the electronics industry
  • Integrators with focus on logistics
  • Robotics companies acting as system integrators/system integrators building own robots
  • Integrators with focus on Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES)
  • For a first glance, please see the following screenshot. 



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