The global conveyor systems market size was USD 5.36 billion in 2020. The global impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with conveyor systems witnessing a positive demand shock across all regions amid the pandemic. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a declining growth of 2.6% in 2020. The market is projected to grow from USD 5.60 billion in 2021 to USD 7.62 billion by 2028 at a CAGR of 4.5% during the 2021-2028 period. The rise in CAGR is attributable to this market’s demand and growth returning to pre-pandemic levels once the pandemic is over. The growth of this market is driven by the handling of large volumes of goods in manufacturing and warehousing operations, as conveyor systems constitute a significant part of material handling systems. These systems are essential for the continuous transport of items from one area to another in many commercial and industrial facilities.
They help reduce overall production time and total labor costs significantly. Therefore, manufacturers in the market are focusing on the demand for automated material handling and movement in industries to make manufacturing processes more efficient.
Increasing E-commerce and Industry 4.0 are Driving Today’s Material Handling Boom E-commerce and industry 4.0 are transforming traditional supply chains, compelling companies to change the way they move, track, and store material using advanced technologies and automation. Manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, and logistics companies establish fulfillment centers and utilize all available warehouse space. For instance, Industrial Kinetics supplies a pair of dual-strand in-floor vehicle slat conveyors for a large vehicle manufacturer, which will convey around 385 tons of vehicles, 250 tons of conveyor chains, and about 635 tons of materials. The demand for intelligent mechanical handling equipment is fueled by the need for automating the complete manufacturing process.
Moreover, the growth of the e-commerce industry has also factored in the growth of the material handling process at distribution centers and warehouses. Hence, aiding in the continuous flow of materials from manufacturing units to distribution centers and warehouses.
For instance, in December 2020, Amazon.com, Inc., an e-commerce giant, announced plans for two fulfillment centers in San Antonio. Thereby resulting in the material handling process, hence, increasing the installation of conveyor systems.
Flat Belt Conveyors to Hold Largest Market Share
The global market is segmented based on type, further sub-segmented into roller conveyors, flat belt conveyors, wheel conveyors, vertical conveyors, & others.
Flat belt conveyors are the largest as these are endless, continuous belts used to convey products or materials in a constant motion. They are made from various materials such as rubbers, plastics, fabric, metal, & leather and are used to convey different types of products via different belt types, such as heavier loads requiring thicker & stronger belts.
Other than flat belt conveyors, roller conveyors are also expected to have a substantial market share. Roller conveyors are of two kinds: gravity-controlled rollers & powered rollers. Gravity-controlled rollers are used to transport products manually when placed horizontally, whereas belts and rollers are used to move materials in the case of powered roller conveyors. Both types of roller conveyors carry products and luggage in a straight or curved structure, depending on the industry they are being deployed in. Besides, wheel conveyors, vertical conveyors, and other segments are likely to exhibit a moderate growth rate during the forecast period owing to their limited applicability.
Bulk Load to Have a Major Share of the Market
The market is classified based on load into unit load & bulk load. These loads are carried depending on the material and its physical state, whether in solid-state, liquid, or gas, along with its packaging type. Unit loads are carried as a single item or multiple items, which are organized to be conveyed without disturbing their integrity. On the other hand, for bulk loads, the majority of the manufacturing industries, such as food & beverage and mining, among others, install this material handling solution. Thus, the bulk load segment is expected to hold a major share of the market.
Supply Chain & Logistics Application to Drive Market Growth
Based on application, the market is segmented into food & beverages, pharmaceuticals, supply chain & logistics, manufacturing, mining, & others. Conveyor systems constitute a vital part of the material handling process in industries involved in every step of industrial processes. Additionally, increasing automation with a reduction in overall costs is the primary reason behind the continuous increase in the adoption of conveyors in all industries. The supply chain & logistics industry is expected to exhibit the highest growth rate for the forecast period among the end-use industries. Moreover, the variety in the application favors their adoption in automotive, retail, food & beverages, pharmaceuticals, and other applications such as public infrastructure such as airports, which are among the major driving factors for the market.
Asia Pacific generated a revenue of USD 1.79 billion in 2020 and is anticipated to emerge as the prevalent region in the market during the forecast period. Besides, this region is also expected to exhibit the highest CAGR for the forecast period. The growth in this region is anticipated to increase with the development in the end-use industries such as FMCG, automobile, airport, & mining. India & China are the major contributors to the market growth in this region.
Additionally, the region is expected to significantly impact growth, as there is a high concentration of manufacturing industries aiming to automate their manufacturing facilities owing to a continuous increase in human resource cost, among other factors. Furthermore, conveyor systems are expected to have consistent growth even in developed countries with increasing automation and industry 4.0. In addition, the rising demand for products from consumers has turned out to be a pressing concern for the manufacturer.
This resulted in implementing automation and an integrated manufacturing process to increase production, which is expected to augment the market growth.
China is home to manufacturing facilities of numerous global companies, accompanied by provincial automotive manufacturers, including BYD Automotive, Geely, Dongfeng, Volkswagen, Ford Motor Co., and others. Furthermore, bulk material handling & storage systems facilitate the management of large volumes of data, thereby reducing unnecessary time consumption and fueling the growth of the market in the region.
The Europe & North America region is witnessing growth with the adoption of automation in the manufacturing units along with increasing penetration of advanced technologies, such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Radio-frequency identification (RFIDs), and Artificial Intelligence (AI). Rising labor costs and infrastructure limitations are expected to aid these regions in tightening their grip on the market share.
The Middle East & Africa, and Latin American markets are also expected to have a moderate growth rate during the forecast period owing to the increasing adoption of these systems in the warehouse & manufacturing facilities. This, coupled with the rising labor cost, is driving the market in this region. These factors are compelling manufacturers to use sophisticated machinery and ensure high throughput quality in a shorter time.
Key Industry Players
Prominent Players Are Aiming to Implement Automation, Digitalization, and Industry 4.0 The prominent players in this market aim for the digital transformation of processes by concentrating a significant part of the research and development budget on digital production solutions. For instance, Durr, a company that provides automation & digitization/Industry 4.0, has built up a complete infrastructure for digital business at an early stage. Its backbone is formed by the ADAMOS platform for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). It is comparable to the operating system of a computer and collects large volumes of production data. On the basis of ADAMOS, the company offers machinery operating on digital services and apps that allow them to optimize their production.
Key Players in the Market are Intensifying Their Regional Presence with Acquisition and Partnerships Moreover, the market appears to be extremely competitive and fragmented. International players are seen gradually intensifying their presence in the developing economies, making it tough for regional sellers to compete with them, especially in terms of quality and price point. These manufacturers are focusing on acquiring regional players, along with entering partnerships, for enhanced market share. The market observes increased competition, which is anticipated to surge further during the forecast period.
Source: Fortune Business Insights
Wiggle eCommerce Fulfilment Centre
Conveyor Systems Ltd completed a major installation supplying an extensive pack and sortation conveyor solution for global online retailer Wiggle Ltd. Operating as the UK’s #1 online Cycle, Run & Swim retailer along with being recently voted the Which? recom- mended #1 online outdoor & leisure shop. In 2015, due to the continuous growth of the business, they took the decision to relocate the Operation to a larger, consolidated Fulfilment Centre (320,000 sq.ft.) in the West Midlands from the multiple small sites operated in Portsmouth.
After a rigorous tender process, CSL’s ability to provide a well demonstrated solution was key to meeting the brief and winning the contract. This included using the latest 3D CAD drawing software to help visualise the system as a lifelike operational representation in the new building.
The brief was to combine packed consignments from 3 pick/pack areas over 3 floors and sort them down 12 lanes into 4 dispatch zones for separate carriers and services. The system needed to cope with up to 90 boxes per minute of varying sizes and weights, from very small parts and clothing up to large boxes of bicycle wheels!
The conveyor system which was specially designed by CSL at over 900mm wide, was engineered in detail after taking into account all comments/ suggestions made by both management and operators at Wiggle together with fully recognising their requirements, considering the vast array of shapes and sizes of products whilst overcoming operational issues.
The mezzanine consists of 2 upper floors which along with the ground floor form three independent pick/pack zones and sortation areas which were designed specifically to avoid issues caused when one combined system is stopped for maintenance/Repairs.
Once an order is picked, packing operatives check the order then pack into an array of outers ranging from poly bags to large cardboard boxes prior to applying carrier despatch labels. The consignment is then placed on a section of zero line pressure (ZLP) accumulation roller conveyor which starts the transit to the sortation area on the ground floor. This type of conveyor is used widely on the system to ensure noncontact queuing due to the wide variety of sizes, shapes and weights causing damage to each other and potentially initiating jams along the system.
The upper mezzanine floors use 2 powered Ambaflex spiral lowerators (almost 100 units supplied by CSL throughout the UK to different customers), to safely and continuously bring the boxes down where they are then barcode scanned to determine, by way of state-of-the-art scanning arrays on each line, which carrier despatch lane they require. When the packages reach the correct despatch lane they are diverted off at 90 degrees using high speed switch sorters. Depending on the source pick floor, they either decline down a grip top belt to an ergonomic picking height or transit on a horizontal roller conveyor to the discharge area where a despatch operative removes and places them onto a pallet or into a wheeled cage ready for carrier collection.
CSL provided the full turnkey conveyor project including control, installation and commissioning of the wide range of packages.
“As this was a new facility it was difficult to visualise the conveyor system prior to the mezzanine floor installation, but CSL provided a detailed 3D drawing which included both the mezzanine and the conveyors which brought clarity to this. The install process was smooth and the end results have allowed us to increase control, flexibility & volumes”
Dan Corrigan, Head of Logistics & Operations Development
New, aesthetic Conveying System for the future
The young Swiss startup Avancon SA (www.avancon.com) has set itself the goal to revolutionize the unit handling systems in distribution and logistics centers. They offer now a new modern and very innovative conveying system. This will be distributed worldwide by manufacturers of conveyor systems and logistic system integrators. The system has been developed by Dieter Specht, the founder of the Interroll Group.The car industry, the computer industryand even the machine industry presentevery few years new and moderndesigned models. Why? To be able toattack new markets and new customers.However, it is hard to see somethingnew in the conveyor industry.
Most ofthe unit conveyor systems weredeveloped 15, 20 or even 50 years agoand are still sold today in a construction,which remembers on the patents of theBritish toy manufacturer Frank Hornby,who has already registered his patent ofa “Meccano” kit in 1901.Now, the two young founders of the start-up Avancon SA are ready to revolutionize the conveyor industry with thisnew and streamlined concept. It’s full of innovative and functionalideas and has been patented worldwide.
Originally, Dieter Specht had developed this systemfor Interroll. But it didn’t fit to their philosophy. So hefound two enthusiastic entrepreneurs, Denis Ratz,he has a bachelor of science in business informaticsand Dr. Daniele Gambetta, who has a PhD inelectric machines. They established inTicino/Switzerland a new start-up under the name Avancon SA (from Avant-garde and Conveyor).
The CEO, Denis Ratz showed the new conveyor system to some large and important manufacturers of conveyor- and logistics-systems and got a very positive response.
“Of course, we wanted to see the reactions to our completely new and very modern designed conveyor concept,” says Denis Ratz. “Most were positively impressed about the outstanding design. I could answer all their questions about the functions and requirements of the market. After these meetings with CEOs and technical managers of big and well-known companies I was highly motivated. Now we are ready. Everything is finished and tested. We can deliver. Several potential customers will visit our large test facility here in Ticino. We believe that the functions and the many advantages of this innovative system will convince them.”
Avancon SA invested heavily into development, in machines, in molds, patents and in the production. With a clever marketing concept enables an exclusive group of Conveyor Manufacturers and System Integrators worldwide to promote the system under their own label/brand and house color to the final market, the operators of logistics and distribution center.
Denis Ratz explains: “We want to offer something avant-garde to the manufacturers of conveyors and intralogistics systems. But we don’t want to interfere with the market of our customers and we will not offer to distribution- and logistics-systems directly to operating companies. Even though this modern system will catch the eye of every manager of this industry.”
The partner and head of technique, Dr. Daniele Gambetta, is an experienced specialist for electronic control and DC-motors. He has patents of completely new DC-motors, which will also be integrated in the future in the Avancon Conveyor System.
“Today – in the digital age of ‘industry-4’ – the electronic connectivity is of enormous importance. I was very fascinated by the ideas of Dieter Specht, so I have joined this young start-up,” says Dr. Daniele Gambetta. “I have never seen such a convincing new concept in the conveyor industry. Everything is completely different, new, safer and much better. We believe that about 80 % of all goods up to 50 kg weight, which have to be transported millions of times worldwide every day, can be handled with this new system.”
Meanwhile, the design has been awarded by the internationally well known “Red-Dot” price in Germany and also by the very coveted throughout Asia, “Good-Design” award in Japan.
The two partners have a lot of courage to break into such an established market today. But who would not want to offer their customers something very aesthetic, even revolutionizing, which differs to all previous designs?
Why aesthetic? Well, ask yourself: would you buy today a machine, which is not modern covered? Now you can offer your customers something extraordinary that combines innovation with emotions.
Denis Ratz says: “We are very positive about the future. We have just moved into a newly built modern factory, which corresponds to our DNA. Here we have a daily capacity production of up to 400 meters conveyor tracks of our new ZPC- system. Anyone who builds conveyor systems by himself can obtain all individual elements from us and so use the patents free of charge. Several customers want to exhibit the new system at one of their upcoming trade fairs.
‘ZPC’ system means “Zone Powered Conveyor” system, in which each zone is controlled and driven separately. The system is extremely flexible and adaptable. It is capable of slow or fast transporting in any desired line and, where necessary, can accumulate without pressure. The system can also communicate with higher IT or Bus system very easily and at significantly reduced installation cost.
Of course it transports goods in all directions, with all the functions an engineer wants for logistics systems.
Last but not least it seems to be much cheaper than it looks.
Automated sortation system installed specifically to deal with “small traffic”
The UKs largest dedicated parcel carrier officially opened its new purpose built, 15,000 square metre, parcel distribution hub in Warrington back in 2014. Designed to support the continuation of growth of the company the new hub has a capacity of around 550,000 parcels a day – almost three times that of the previous site in Warrington.
The facility’s purpose was to help with the developing requirement for next day deliveries, playing a key role in plans for international expansion and to provide a platform for further innovation, as the company looks to introduce a host of new products to the market.
L.A.C Conveyor Systems Ltd is now entering its 4th year, working closely with the multinational delivery company, in the development and implementation of innovative, flexible technologies to suit the ever-evolving challenge of handling parcels from a wide range of shapes and sizes whilst achieving faster processing times.
L.A.C Conveyor Systems innovative
The latest challenge was to introduce a sortation solution specifically designed to accommodate small sized parcels. Prior to the new solution the sortation of “small traffic” was a combined sortation process, with larger parcels. This combined automated parcel sortation approach meant that smaller parcels were harder to control and ultimately ended up being manually sorted. This system required a lot of human intervention to gain full control, proving not the most efficient approach, as the accuracy of the sort could not be guaranteed. Separating smalls from larger parcels meant higher throughputs could be achieved utilising a more streamlined solution with a 100% accuracy of sort.
L.A.C Conveyor Systems innovative “Automation Toolbox” meant a combination of technologies could be combined to satisfy the required solution and could be delivered and implemented within a small footprint and with minimal disruption to current operations.
The solution utilised L.A.C designed induct/feed conveyors, handling bulk parcels on infeed for initial parcel separation, which were then separated further utilising a flighted belt conveyor, leading on to a horizontal conveyor with 5 moveable ploughs and 1 fixed. The parcels were then broken down further spread across 6 chutes, presenting parcels to an operator platform. Operator interaction at this stage of the process provided a means of orientating parcels and placing them onto a Equinox split tray sorter with barcode labels accessible for automated scanning and verification.
The Equinox split tray sorter is a tray-based “bomb-bay” sorter developed specifically to handle flat goods such as packets, books, garments, parcels, and accessories, making it the ideal choice for L.A.C to integrate as part of a turnkey solution. The system offers the capacity to sort 10,000 trays per hour exceeding the requirements, but offering scope for future growth. It has a characteristic oval-shaped conveyor on which the trays circulate. This “open oval” design allows operators and further automation to integrate with ease.
An overhead scanning system ensured parcel identification and location could be achieved at high speed. L.A.C’s modular software design structure offered a seamless link with the host IT system, completing the final piece of the puzzle.
This unique automation approach has ensured a fast and flexible response to future e-commerce demands and has enabled an increased ability to handle parcels of such a shape and size in such a controlled manner. L.A.C’s diverse inhouse skill set has offered a solution that is cost effective providing faster processing of incoming “small” parcels.
Modernising the supply chain network
System to handle small sized parcels only
Cost effective and efficient flow of goods to consumers
Selecting & implementing the best technology
Allow for more next-day delivery
Increased order accuracy
Overall reduction in costs
Integrate with latest supply chain technology
Key services & Technologies
Feed conveyor – shaft mounted motor, tapered hopper to allow product to fall onto flyted belt conveyor.
Modular belt conveyor with hopper
Discharge conveyor with high side for product control
5 off moving ploughs and 1 fixed. Underslung braked motor with pivot arm connected to plough
6 off discharge chutes
6 off operator stations
Each discharge station offering PTL button light module
Double tray wide oval sorter
Sorter gross capacity (10,000 trays per hour)
Tray type 7 DT Double Tray – (Bombay also known as split tray)
Sorter direction – Clockwise
Barcode label control linking carton to station
Item detection sensing
Omni Camera Scanner – Overhead system for barcode label capture
L.A.C IT hardware and Software integration
Wireless network connection
VPN Remote Access
100% Accuracy of sort.
Increased supply chain efficiencies
Sortation direct into shipping cartons
Easy to use, simple efficient design and low maintenance decrease cost and increase uptime.
Design allows for the highest accuracy as well as a very small footprint without losing throughput.
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