The robot end-effector market is expected to grow from USD 2.6 billion in 2019 to USD 5.7 billion by 2024, at a CAGR of 16.9% during the forecast period. The modularity ensures that the grippers do not have to be changed from time to time, thereby reducing the cost of redesigning and downtime associated with its change and replacement; hence, the growing demand for modular end-effectors is the key factor driving the growth of the market. The increasing adoption of collaborative robots (cobots) owing to their benefits and features is another factor driving the market growth.
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Grippers to hold the largest market size by 2019
A gripper enables the holding and manipulation of an object that performs motions such as holding, moving, tightening, and releasing. Most gripper fingers are made from hard materials, but soft grippers are seeing increasing adoption for handling sensitive objects. Welding guns had the largest market share due to extensive use in the automotive industry but that scenario changed after 2017. Since 2018, grippers now have the largest share due to the growing popularity of electric grippers, collaborative grippers, soft grippers, and customized grippers, and this trend is expected to continue for next 5 years.
Robot end-effector market for handling application to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period
Material handling is mainly used for pelletizing, packing, picking, and unloading. End-effectors that handle dangerous goods have to be highly redundant to power outages and blackout. Similarly, end-effectors used in the food industry have to be certified as “food grade.” Increasing use of various grippers and palletizers in various industries such as electrical and electronics; metals and machinery; and food & beverages is the primary reason for handling applications registering the highest growth in the market.
Robot end-effector market for food & beverages industry to grow at a significant CAGR during 2019–2024
Owing to ununiformed shape, size, weight, and texture of the products, automation in the food & beverages industry is comparatively different than other industries. In the food & beverages industry, robot end-effectors are required to maintain a high degree of sanitation. Food grade stainless steel and plastics must be used to avoid any contamination due to microbiological traps or water stagnation. Increasing automation across various stages of the supply chain in the food & beverages industry is contributing to the significant growth.
Robot end-effector market in APAC is expected to grow at highest CAGR during forecast period
The electrical and electronics industry in APAC is the most important driver for robot end-effectors owing to rising demand for electronic products around the world. Components such as computer chips, battery, and displays that are small and sensitive need to be handled with high speed and high precision. In the developing APAC countries, the food and packaging industry has not yet reached maturity, which represents an opportunity for the growth of the market. Large e-retailers are also expected to use end-effectors for warehousing on a large scale in the following years. Hence, APAC will continue to have the highest growth rate and market share compared to other regions during the forecast period.
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Key Market Players
Major companies in the robot end-effector market are Zimmer Group (Germany), Schunk (Germany), Schmalz (US), Destaco (US), Robotiq (Canada), Applied Robotics (US), EMI Corp. (US), Festo (Germany), KUKA (Germany), Soft Robotics (US), Tünkers (Germany), ATI Industrial Automation (US), ABB (Switzerland), Weiss Robotics (Germany), Piab AB (Sweden), KUKA (Germany), FIPA (Germany), SMC (Japan), IPR (Germany), IAI (Japan), JH Robotics (US), Bastian Solutions (US), and RAD (US). Apart from these, OnRobot (Denmark) and IPR (Germany) are few of the emerging companies in the market.