Boom in emerging economies offers potential for machine safety market: study

Friday January 11, 2013
Written by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
With the introduction of stringent safety requirements in developed countries, demand for machine safety solutions is expected to rise significantly, according to a new report from Frost & Sullivan. The report also found that the growth of manufacturing sectors in emerging countries fuels further adoption. Manufacturers world-wide recognize that machine safety can give them a competitive advantage and a good public image, and therefore, opt for machine safety systems despite the economic downturn. The report, Strategic Analysis of Global Machine Safety Market, finds that the market earned revenues of more than $1.27 billion in 2011 and estimates this to reach $1.75 billion in 2016. "Safety systems monitor health of plant equipment to reduce its exposure to damage and lengthen its life-cycle," said Frost & Sullivan research analyst Anna Mazurek. "In addition, they decrease the probability of work-related injuries, allowing machine operators to work more efficiently. This drives end users to employ machine safety solutions." Moreover, regulations require employers to create a safe working environment for employees. Manufacturers, especially in developed countries where law enforcement is high, are aware that it is more cost-efficient to use machine safety devices than bear the penalty for non-compliance. Improvements in safety solutions also offer business opportunities for machine safety vendors among conservative end users. However, the recent downturn has forced manufacturers to concentrate on reducing operating and maintenance costs, leading to declining investments in areas not crucial for plant operation. Unfortunately, this can cover safety solutions as well, which many end users still view as non-critical. In developing countries, poor execution of policies curbs investment, which leads to lower sales and slower development of technology. A change in perception is vital to market penetration. End users need to realize that a safe working environment is not an optional production process improvement, but a necessity and an obligation to employees. "To drive adoption, suppliers need to educate potential customers on the full range of safety benefits offered through the advancements in plant networking devices and control systems," concluded Mazurek. "To optimize their investment, end users must know how to assess the risk of injury and opt for solutions that can address those specific needs."

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