Industrial robots: estimated operational stock worldwide 2015-2020

Globally, the operational stock of multipurpose industrial robots is expected to be around 3.2 million units by 2020. Since 2015, the stock has been increasing considerably through each year. Operational stock is the level of inventory required to meet operational obligations.

The market for industrial robots

During this time period, sales of industrial robots increased exponentially. Key companies within the industry include ABB, which saw the highest level of revenue amongst its competitors. In 2018, the Swiss company generated over 16 billion U.S. dollars in revenue related to robots and industrial automation.

Automation: increasing output without increasing costs

Like the ABB group, conglomerates such as Siemens or Mitsubishi Electric are the major vendors of industrial automation and industry software. The automation market is comprised of a variety of products and services, including relays, switches, and control systems, as well as industry software development and services. In light of an increase in use of artificial intelligence, the market for automation software is expected to grow to over 50 billion U.S. dollars by 2023 (1071142), providing a way for companies to produce more products without increasing production costs or wages.

Operational stock of multipurpose industrial robots worldwide from 2015 to 2020

Number in thousand units
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Release date




Survey time period

2015 to 2018

Supplementary notes

* The figures for 2019 and 2020 are forecasts.

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