Overall, the machines sector is rapidly growing and becoming more and more international. Within this sector, some equipment categories will continue to grow in 2017.
Machine tools will still be the most profitable industry.
This sector of machinery will continue to be a leader in 2017, mainly due to significant innovation (with the advent of the industry 4.0, new machines are being developed) and a fast growing demand in Asian countries. The demand in China represents an increase of 9.2% each year between 2013 and 2017.
Production forecasts for machine tools in India are predicted to grow by 13% over the 2016-2020 period. Asia is the fastest growing continent in terms of machine tools consumption, as well as production. Overall, NIC (newly industrialized countries) such as China, South Africa, India, and Brazil are becoming important consumers of machine tools.
Laser cutting machines as the fastest innovative sector.
In terms of new products and innovation, laser cutters are the fastest growing sector of sheet metal machinery. New machines are now totally fibre working (before, they were gas working), which enables faster production and a higher level of accuracy.
It was possible to see these new machines in action during the industrial trade show MSV Brno in October 2016 (most of them by the manufacturers Trumpf and Bystronic). Analysts predict that the laser cutting machine market will grow at a CAGR of 8.91% (2016-2020).
Analysts predict that the global plastic processing machinery market will grow at a CAGR of 7% (2015-2019). Injection moulders are still the main sector. New machines are now becoming completely electric. With a tight, repeatable control of operations, production can be completed with less raw material and fewer additives, which reduces waste.
The independent functionality of electric machines means that many tasks can run simultaneously, resulting in much faster production cycles. The market is very competitive, which forces brands to constantly innovate. Many top manufacturers share the market: Engel, Arburg, Battenfeld, Krauss Maffei, Sandretto, Billion, Demag.
The global packaging machinery market is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 5% (2016-2020).
This increase will be driven by a fast growing demand in Asia, Oceania, and Africa (+7.1%), followed by Latin America (+5.6%). However, Europe will continue to be the main area in terms of demand.
The highest global growth in packaging machinery will be for the cosmetic industry (+6%), followed by the chemical industry (+5%) and food industry (+5%).
2017 will be a very interesting year for the machinery market. The introduction of both Industry 4.0 and online marketplaces will make the market more competitive and global.
Manufacturers will continue to innovate and propose new products. Moreover, the market is now split. Europe, the leader in the machinery market, must now compete against newly industrialized countries in Asia and South America. One thing is still for sure though: there are plenty of opportunities in the machinery market.