After U.S. shipments of industrial trucks, tractors, trailers, and stacker machinery dropped between 2007 and 2009, they rose again in 2010 by 10.5%. Then in 2011, shipments jumped by 17.5% to $9.51 billion. This sets the stage for solid growth for this equipment over the next few years, according to the 4th edition of Sundale Research’s State of the Industry report on Material Handling Equipment.
Including an estimated 7.8% increase in 2012 for this segment, shipments are projected to rise by an average of 7.0% per year from 2011 to 2016. At this time, shipments will top $13.3 billion. A few of the most positive trends in this segment will be the move toward greener machinery, including low emissions equipment, electric motor trucks, and more ergonomic machinery.
The report also projects solid growth for segments of the automated material handling equipment market.
For example, automated storage and retrieval systems are expected to grow by an average of 8.0% per year through 2016, following a sharp rise of 13.0% in 2011. Last year’s growth amounts to $650 million.
Last year U.S. shipments of automatic guided vehicles grew by 9.4% to an estimated $1.75 billion. Shipments are expected to grow by an average of 7.5% per year through 2016, according to this report.
In 2011 U.S. shipments of material handling robots increased by 8.7% to an estimated $750.0 million. Shipments are projected to grow by an average of 8.5% per year through 2016. This report cites benefits such as improvements in speed and versatility, cheaper systems and components and better efficiency in mistake-prone applications.