Modex 2012: Automatic guided vehicle industry reports strong sales in 2011

The Automated Guided Vehicle Systems (AGVS) Industry Group of the Material Handling Industry of America (MHIA) reported on Monday that its member companies saw a 25% increase in sales of AGVs in 2011, totaling $108 million.
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By Sara Pearson Specter, Editor at Large
February 07, 2012 - MMH Editorial

The Automated Guided Vehicle Systems (AGVS) Industry Group of the Material Handling Industry of America (MHIA) reported on Monday that its member companies saw a 25% increase in sales of AGVs in 2011, totaling $108 million. Those numbers represent 925 vehicles and 130 systems sold, said Sarah Carlson, chair of AGVS and marketing director at Jervis B. Webb Company (Booth 2705).

“The combined numbers for 2010 and 2011 are especially strong,” Carlson said. “Total sales exceeded $200 million for the two years combined.”

Although manufacturing operations continue to be the primary users of AGVs, 25% of systems now in use are found in warehouse and distribution center environments, she added.

“This has a lot to do with the flexibility and scalability of the systems, as well as the fact that the cost of the equipment has come down,” Carlson said. She cited the group’s findings that there were no sales of wire guided vehicles in 2010 or 2011; instead, more-flexible guidance systems—such as laser, magnetic tape and optical—have increased in use.

Additionally, Mats Herrstromer, global product manager of AGVS for Dematic (Booth 2300) announced that the B56.5 AGV safety standard is expected to be approved by mid-2012. A cross-section of suppliers, customers, academia and government experts are working together to develop the standard, which can be reviewed online at the Industrial Truck Standards Development Foundation Web site (http://www.Itsdf.org).

Modex 2012 is scheduled to be held February 6-9, 2012 in Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center. The tradeshow will showcase the latest manufacturing, distribution and supply chain solutions in the material handling and logistics industry. Modern’s complete Modex 2012 coverage.



About the Author

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Sara Pearson Specter
Editor at Large

Sara Pearson Specter has written articles and supplements for Modern Materials Handling and Material Handling Product News as an Editor at Large since 2001. Specter has worked in the fields of graphic design, advertising, marketing, and public relations for nearly 20 years, with a special emphasis on helping business-to-business industrial and manufacturing companies. She owns her own marketing communications firm, Sara Specter, Marketing Mercenary LLC (http://www.saraspecter.com). Clients include companies in a diverse range of fields, including materials handing equipment, systems and packaging, professional and financial services, regional economic development and higher education. Specter graduated from Centre College in Danville, Ky. with a bachelor’s degree in French and history. She lives in Oregon’s Willamette Valley where she and her husband are in the process of establishing a vineyard and winery (http://www.BellsUpWinery.com).


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