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Swisslog plays key role in strong KUKA growth

07 August 2017

Orders received by the industrial group increased by 12.8% to a record level of 1,007.5 million euro in Q2/17. It predicts sales revenue of around €3.3 billion for the full year.

Warehouse automation specialist Swisslog, which was acquired by KUKA for $357 million in 2014, played a key part in the impressive numbers.

The Swisslog division clocked up orders totalling €234.7 million (Q2/16: €210.1 million), equivalent to an increase of 11.7%. This represented a continuation of the positive development shown in previous quarters, says KUKA. This performance was driven by the Logistics segment, which showed substantial growth.

Orders received at Swisslog rose 38.4% to €464.9 million in the first half of 2017 compared with the same period of the previous year (H1/16: €335.8 million).

For example, Swisslog won a large-scale order from dm-drogerie markt, Europe’s highest-turnover drugstore chain: valued at around 100 million euro.

An innovative logistics centre will be built in Brandenburg over the next two and a half years. This is the third logistics centre to be implemented for the drugstore group by Swisslog, which is responsible for both intralogistics and construction. The solution for is based on ACPaQ, the newly developed robot-based solution concept from Swisslog.

The record set by the third quarter of 2016 (Q3/16: €987.5 million) was significantly exceeded. The Robotics (38.8%) and Swisslog (11.7%) divisions were the main contributors to this positive result with double-digit growth rates. The strong demand was supported by both the Automotive and the General Industry segments.

CEO Till Reuter said: “We are investing in new and existing partnerships. The latest example is a cooperation agreement with Volkswagen, which ties into a joint research project which deals with human-robot collaboration. The “e-smart Connect” project consists of a practical and user-friendly solution for charging the batteries of electric vehicles.

“In the future, robots will support people in many day-to-day activities. Daily life without driverless vehicles will also become unthinkable. Together, we are working on innovative concepts to shape this future.”