Autonomous Forklift Market Size, Share, Trends, Forecast 2028

Autonomous Forklift Market

The autonomous forklift market is projected to grow from USD 4.6 billion in 2023 to USD 8.8 billion by 2028, at a CAGR of 13.8% from 2023 to 2028. The growth of the market is influenced by factors such as rising complexities for product handling, rising need for smart logistics, good return on investment, better space utilization, and growing consumerism through online platforms. Therefore, the autonomous forklift market is expected to grow significantly in the coming years.

Increasing demand for automated warehouses and automated material handling equipment

Due to its low infrastructure requirements, autonomous forklift-driven automation is widely used. According to Conveyco Technologies, automated forklifts equipped with detection sensors can increase the operational efficiency of retail warehouses by 20%. According to a survey by Inbound Logistics, labor costs account for about 65% of the warehouse’s overall budget, along with employee attrition and low labor productivity. In addition, the warehouse automation market grew from USD 9.95 billion in 2016 to USD 15.59 billion in 2021 due to rising rents and supply chain disruptions.

Autonomous forklifts found applications in warehouses for material handling and storing during manufacturing, warehousing, and distribution of products. The growing complexities of manufacturing and warehousing processes, labor shortage, and rising concerns for safety and health in production and storage facilities require flexible and cost-effective material handling solutions. According to MarketsandMarkets analysis, the automated material handling equipment market increased from USD 32.9 billion in 2017 to USD 43.6 billion in 2021.

In intralogistics systems, autonomous forklifts are frequently used and are considered more effective for low-height racking systems. They are the best option for material handling operations due to their advantages, like compact size, high weight capacity, and capacity to lift and carry loads. Autonomous forklifts in manufacturing facilities can perform repetitive jobs like stocking and retrieving inventory. Furthermore, they can function independently thanks to sophisticated navigational technologies like SLAM and sensors. The autonomous version is thought to increase operational effectiveness and decrease errors and accidents.

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Development of IoT-integrated autonomous forklifts

Material handling operations have benefited from the advent of Industrialization of 4.0, the Internet of Things (IOT), big data analytics, and cloud computing, which have reduced human intervention in the supply chain and increased automation.

IOT is a closed-loop system that combines technology with actual physical operations and equipment for material handling. For the autonomous forklift, precise data-driven optimization is essential. Forklift health must be continuously monitored by a variety of sensors and encoders to reduce the risk of damage to the facility and equipment. IOT creates a closed ecosystem that enables a fleet management interface to be used by an operator to monitor the performance of autonomous forklifts. The autonomous forklift system has improved the plant’s operational effectiveness while also reducing employee fatigue from physically taxing repetitive tasks. The use of IoT-driven autonomous forklifts in supply chain applications is anticipated to grow due to additional benefits like accurate mixed case picking, travel and lift speed optimization, and real-time location determination.

Asia Pacific is projected to be the largest market by 2028.

By 2028, the autonomous forklift market is expected to be dominated by the Asia Pacific region due to growing adoption in China and India. While it is anticipated that other nations in the region, like Japan and South Korea, will increase their share by modernizing and modifying current automated material handling equipment. Additionally, international autonomous forklift OEMs are moving their operations to this region. The region is anticipated to increase its share during the forecast period because the technology transfer has increased the number of local players, which is expected to lower the cost of adopting autonomous forklifts in the region.

Key Market Players

The autonomous forklift market is dominated by players such as Toyota Industries Corporation (Japan), Kion Group AG (Germany), Mitsubishi Logisnext Co Ltd (France), Jungheinrich AG (Germany), Hyster-Yale Materials Handling (US), Hangcha Group Co, Ltd (China), and Agilox Services GMBH (Austria).

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