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[ ICT / Switzerland ] Stäubli Korea

panasonic korea

With its unrivaled expertise in mechatronics, Stäubli Korea is more than ready to usher in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

From the beloved, beeping R2-D2 from Star Wars or the villainous T-1000 from the Terminator films, robots have played leading roles in more Hollywood blockbusters than we can count. That’s probably why images of shiny humanoids from sci-fi films first come to mind when we think of robots. But robots aren’t just fictional characters popping up in films; they actually play a major role in our everyday lives. And with the Fourth Industrial Revolution to radically change the way we live, countries like Korea are preparing to embrace this transformation.

According to a report by the International Federation of Robotics, Korea is home to one of the world’s largest sales markets for industrial robots. The country is also expected to achieve an annual growth rate of 5 percent in robot sales and holds the top spot for the world’s highest robot density, which refers to the ratio of industrial robots to employees. Add to that the Korean government’s active support and funding in the robotics sector, and you have the perfect ecosystem for mechatronics companies like Stäubli to flourish.

“Stäubli knew that Korea was a country with huge potential in the robotics industry,” says Moon-Seog Kim, business unit manager of Staubli Korea. “The company was confident that by doing business here, it would be able to secure its competitiveness on an international scale.”

Stäubli was first founded in Switzerland in 1892 as a small workshop called ‘Schelling & Stäubli’. It then set up a manufacturing site in France in 1909 and further expanded its business in other parts of the world, including the United States, China, Japan and Korea. Over the last 125 years, Stäubli has grown into an international mechatronics solutions provider with a global workforce of over 4,500 in 29 countries. The company currently focuses on three major activities—connectors, robotics and textiles—serving customers who want to increase their productivity in many industrial sectors.

Although the company initially focused on textiles, Stäubli Korea began specializing in connection solutions and robots in 2010. Despite its relatively short history in the robotics industry, Stäubli Korea has already signed MOUs with a number of Korean small and medium-enterprises to localize its products. Most notably, the company kicked off ‘TX2 Technology Day’ last month in Daegu and Seoul to showcase its latest lineup of TX2 robots to the Korean public.

The robots are being hailed by the company as the next generation of fast and precise 6-axis robots, as they are “redefining performance with the optimum balance of speed, rigidity, size and envelope.” Most notably, the TX2 robots can be used in all areas, including the most harsh and restrictive environments.

“The new TX2 robots are a clear example of what we can expect in the Fourth Industrial Revolution because they will further enhance the manufacturing capacity of smart factories” says Kim. “The Korean government is actively supporting the growth of these factories, which will strengthen the collaboration between man and machine.”

As Kim mentions, the Korean government is playing an indispensable role in the rise of smart factories. Earlier this year, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy announced that the private and public sectors will work together to increase the number of smart factories throughout the country and help train people to work in these factories.

When asked what the future holds for Stäubli, Kim says that thanks to Korea’s ideal business environment and government support, the demand for robots will increase. “Our products offer crucial solutions to challenges that can arise from the Fourth Industrial Revolution. On this note, I’m confident that Stäubli will gain a more competitive edge here in Korea.”

By Esther Oh (estheroh@kotra.or.kr)
Executive Consultant/Invest Korea

One-on-one with Jamie Metzl


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