Global revenues in the global material handling industry will rise $33 billion by 2021 to reach $148 billion a year as businesses ramp up their investment in equipment to accommodate an increase in consumer spending and the fulfillment operations supporting it, according to a forecast released yesterday.
Material handling investments will also be stimulated by efforts to improve workplace safety, operate more efficiently, and rein in rising labor costs, according to the analyst firm Research and Markets. Demand will be strongest for automated guided vehicles (AGVs) and automated storage/retrieval systems (AS/RS), according to the report.
The Asia-Pacific region will be the largest market during the forecast period, led by high growth rates in China and India, the report said. Although businesses in Europe and North America were the early adopters of material handling equipment, they have now fallen behind in terms of demand for new products, Research and Markets said. After Asia, the next biggest markets by 2021 will include the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) and the Americas regions.