Japanese motor manufacturer Nidec has embarked on a robotics shopping spree, following the $45m purchase of German robot parts maker MS-Graessner, as it looks to tap into rapidly growing robotic demand throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas.
Nidec, which it is believed is set to spend $450m on acquiring five German robotics companies by the end of March 2019, has ambitions to enhance its technological capabilities and take advantage of a global shift toward automated manufacturing.
The Japanese company, known for speed-reducing gearboxes used in the joints of robot arms, will pay an estimated JPY5bn ($45m) for the German manufacturer through its subsidiary Nidec-Shimpo.
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In a statement, the company said: "As a result of the transaction, Nidec-Shimpo is now capable of offering more comprehensive precision gearbox solutions, both linear and angular types, and leveraging Graessner's sales network to expand its sales in Europe which offers a large market for planetary gearboxes.
"In addition, Nidec-Shimpo plans to manufacture its newly developed strain wave gearboxes for robotic application in Graessner's German factory and offer its products along with aftersales services to Graessner's customers serving the robot industry."
Graessner will now be able to sell its products through Nidec-Shimpo's sales and aftersales service network in Asia and the Americas.
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"Nidec-Shimpo and Graessner have strong brands, high technological capabilities and solid customer bases. Nidec believes that its financial strength and global presence will bolster these advantages, which will help the company achieve future growth," Nidec added.
Nidec plans to buy another machine tools and robot parts manufacturing company later this month, as well as two more in January 2019 and one in March 2019. Nidec intends to use the acquired companies' facilities to produce its own robot parts and expand sales to European robotics makers.