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Robotics and automation stocks to watch in 2022

Robotics stocks are companies related to the booming industries of automation and robots, which are having an increasingly important role in our everyday lives. The use of automation and robotics is only growing, backed by advances in artificial intelligence (AI). These advances create investing opportunities. As the demand for automation increases, that potentially means increased revenues and profits for the industry. Learn why this sector may continue to expand in the long-term and read about some of the top robotics and automation stocks and ETFs to watch this year.

Why invest in robotics and automation?

Robotics and automation (R&A) innovation is pushing forward, allowing businesses to provide goods and services more efficiently and often with better margins. Initially, machines take over simple tasks from humans, but as AI progresses, the number and variety of jobs that robots can do will increase.

A World Economic Forum report​ estimates that about 85 million jobs will be lost due to robotics and automation by 2025, although this will be offset by 97 million new jobs related to R&A and AI.

This shows a strong shift toward automation. That means increasing demand for products and services centred around R&A and AI into 2025 and beyond. For those investing in stocks 404, robotics and automation is an industry to watch over the next decade.

15 robotics companies to watch

Below is a list of companies that produce robots or provide parts to robotics makers. Robotics also includes artificial intelligence, so the list contains AI stocks as well. Most of these companies are considered manufacturing automation stocks, since their products or services aid other companies in automating their manufacturing processes.

Brooks Automation (BRKS)

Brooks provides automation solutions for the semiconductor and life sciences industries. The semiconductor segment focuses on contamination control and wafer automation. The life sciences segment provides gene sequencing and services, automated cold storage, bar coding, sealing, peeling labels, and capping and removing caps from bottles.

Cognex (CGNX)

Cognex is focused on machine vision for analysing visual data to improve efficiency. VisionPro is a suite of products used for different visual applications including flowcharting, inspection and parts location, measurement, identification, bar code readers, and more. These products can do the “seeing” or measuring, for example, instead of a human.

Applied Materials (AMAT)

Applied Materials provides services and tools that are used by semiconductor and display (TV, monitor, laptop) companies globally. These products include factory automation software as well as many tools that aid in specific processes such as etching, oxidation, electrochemical disposition, and inspection.

Rockwell Automation (ROK)

Rockwell provides hardware, software and products that help companies automate. Hardware solutions include energy monitoring, distributed control systems, lighting control, motion and motor control, relays, timers, sensors and switches. Software includes the FactoryTalk brand available for design, operations, maintenance, and innovation.

ABB Ltd (ABB)

ABB is headquartered in Switzerland and focuses on robotics, heavy equipment, and automation. The Robotics division provides products in machine vision, industrial robots and software, and programmable logic controllers. The process automation division provides AI solutions, electrification systems, and manufacturing control systems.

Teradyne (TER)

Teradyne focuses on automated testing equipment. The testing equipment is available for semiconductor, wireless, and system tests. Its products are used in the process of making microchips, smartphones, computers, games, and other products. It also works in industrial automation, which includes robotic arms and controls, and mobile robots.

Eaton (ETN)

Based in Ireland, Eaton is a power management company that provides electrical components, hydraulic products, aerospace sensors and parts, vehicle parts, and e-mobility products for electric vehicles. The goal is to provide automated solutions to many industries to improve efficiency.

Fanuc (FANUC)

Fanuc provides robotics internationally to help companies with profitability, efficiency, and quality in manufacturing processes. It offers more than 100 models of robots, as well as the Robodrill and Robonano for precision machining. The company is headquartered in Japan.

Hollysis Automation Technologies (HOLI)

Hollysis is a China-based company offering a wide range of services including process automation systems, factory automation, nuclear power control systems, train operation systems, and medical dispensing and experiment automation products.

Blue Prism (PRSM)

Blue Prism is based in the UK and is a leader in automation software. This includes cybersecurity robots which are used in government, medical and financial fields. It generates revenue through licensing these and other products. Its market cap is roughly $1.2bn.

Honeywell (HON)

Honeywell is a conglomerate, meaning it does many things. This includes automation divisions around the world. It is not a direct play on robotics on automation since the company does do other things including aerospace, building technologies, materials and technology, and safety and productivity, all of which are becoming more automated using Honeywell products.

General Electric (GE)

GE is another multinational conglomerate corporation expanding into robotics. Technologies include robots that work in small, hard-to-get-at areas, and the SupeRSquad which are drones that handle tasks remotely.

Intuitive Surgical (ISRG)

Intuitive Surgical is focused on medical robots that improve medical efficiency and aid in surgeries or other medical procedures. These includes the da Vinci surgical system, which is used around the world, the Ion endoluminal system used to detect lung cancer, as well as other tools that aid in grip and cutting, for example.

Stryker (SYK)

Stryker focuses on the medical field, providing robots that aid in surgeries, as well as common medical tools such as advanced hospital beds, medical power tools, and stretchers. The Mako SmartRobotics line provides a total solution for surgeons performing total knee, partial knee, or total hip replacement surgeries. The product line models the patient’s anatomy, guides where to cut, and then provides analytics.

iRobot Corporation (IRBT)

This company focuses on consumer robots, such as the Roomba and Braava, which are household robotic vacuums and mops. It also offers Root, which is a robot that helps children learn coding skills. All their products are sold around the world.

How to invest in robotics

The robotics, automation, and artificial intelligence industry is a big one. Before deciding which stocks to invest in, consider learning some investing strategies 404​. Strategies are a guide for how to pick stocks, when to buy them, and when to sell them.

Robotics and automation ETFs

ETFs (exchange-traded funds) 404​ hold a basket of stocks involved in the robotics or automation fields. ETFs are commonly used with passive investing 404​ strategies. Here is a list of some ETFs to watch within these fields:

Global X Robotics & Artificial Intelligence ETF (BOTZ)

  • Assets under management (AUM): $2.83bn

  • Average daily volume (ADV): 630,000

  • Expense ratio (EP): 0.68%

ARK Autonomous Tech & Robotics ETF (ARKQ)

  • AUM: $2.7bn

  • ADV: 292,000

  • EP: 0.75%

Robo Global Robotics & Automation Index ETF (ROBO)

  • AUM: $2bn

  • ADV: 90,000

  • EP: 0.95%

iShares Automation & Robotics UCTIS ETF (RBTX)

  • AUM: $4.3bn

  • ADV: 40,000

  • EP: 0.4%

  • On the LSE the price is in GBP, but the fund’s base currency is USD and is unhedged.

FAQs

Who is the leader in robotics?

There is no single company that dominates the industry. ABB Ltd, Rockwell Automation, and Applied Materials are considered strong players and are some of the largest non-conglomerate companies in the space. These also blend into the world of artificial intelligence stocks.

Which company owns Boston Dynamics?

Boston Dynamics is now owned by Hyundai Motor Group, with its takeover completed in 2021. It was founded when it spun off from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1992.


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