Material handling equipment provider SSI Schaefer Group said today it has acquired a majority stake in RO-BER Industrieroboter GmbH, a vendor of gantry robot systems designed for picking and palletizing. Terms were not disclosed.
Neunkirchen, Germany-based Schaefer intends to leverage RO-BER's robotics expertise to develop innovative warehouse automation solutions, Schaefer said in a statement released at the CeMAT trade show in Hannover, Germany.
Schaefer said it plans to take advantage of RO-BER's capabilities to advance its implementation of "Industry 4.0," a strategy for integrating automation, data exchange, and manufacturing technologies. Schaefer makes automated solutions for warehousing, conveying, picking, and sorting, as well as software to control in-house material flows.
Both companies said they would use their complementary technologies to apply the motion-based properties of gantry cranes to new applications in sorting, buffering, and linking functions within the distribution center.
RO-BER, based in Kamen, Germany, develops gantry robot systems for a range of material handling tasks such as palletizing, depalletizing, picking, and sequencing. It will continue to operate as a fully independent company based in Kamen.
"SSI Schaefer and RO-BER have a lot in common with regard to customers and industries," said Hans Gerd Severin, managing director of RO-BER, in a statement. "The inclusion of our standardized robot systems in their concepts complements the SSI Schaefer product portfolio perfectly, especially for end-of-line palletizing and in picking systems."