Drives and Controls Magazine
Digital factory market ‘will be worth $111bn by 2026’
Published:  13 September, 2018

The digital factory market is expanding at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 35% and will be worth $111bn by 2026, according to a new report from ABI Research. Technologies included in its definition of “the digital factory” include PLCs, robots, motors and pumps.

“Today, the global manufacturing sector has only started to adopt digital factory technologies, which will expand and change as factories get more connected, networked and flexible,” says ABI principal analyst, Pierce Owen. “Vendors such as PTC, ABB, GE, Siemens, SAP, and Telit, and systems integrators such as Accenture, Wipro, and Atos, help factories to connect and network their equipment and monetise the data generated on the factory floor. These vendors have set themselves up to adapt and transform with new technologies as they start to implement what they have now.”

According to the report, the food, beverage and tobacco industries represent the largest opportunity globally, with $19bn in digital factory revenues forecast for 2026, but the largest sector differs from country to country. In the US, the chemical products industry represents the biggest opportunity, potentially generating $7bn in digital factory revenues by 2026. In Germany and Japan, the automotive sector is leading the way, while in China, the second-largest market, other forms of durable goods offer the biggest opportunities.

“Digital factory technologies will see adoption in every major industry in most of the leading manufacturing countries around the globe, but only the vendors that chase innovation and continuously adapt to the needs of new customers will take full advantage,” Owen predicts. “Right now, this includes the leading platform providers and systems integrators, as well as some start-ups such as FogHorn Systems and Fictiv.”