Lowered financial barriers for autonomous mobile robots
Mobile Industrial Robots has launched its new mobile robot leasing program. Often referred to as ‘robots as a service’ (RaaS), leasing lets companies of any size, from small start-ups to multinational enterprises, deploy mobile robot solutions with low (or no) upfront costs and low monthly payments. This lowers financial barriers for investing in AMRs and gives customers a near immediate return on investment (ROI).
“While sales of our mobile robots continue to thrive, many companies still prefer to lease their logistics equipment rather than make a capital investment upfront,” said Thomas Visti, CEO, MiR. “Leasing the robots becomes an operational expenditure instead, enabling our customers to quickly get started reaping the benefits AMRs offer as they automate monotonous, repetitive, and often injury-prone manual material transportation.”
With MiR Finance, customers get the chance to lease the full package, including the robots, integration and top modules for the robots. The monthly cost of the leasing depends on the type of robot and the length of the leasing period, but a simple calculation shows that it costs $4.44 per hour (or $711 per month) to lease a MiR100 robot if it runs in one-shift operation. Thereby, MiR Finance becomes an attractive way of investing in mobile robots and start optimising internal logistics.
MiR’s distributor network will be working with a third-party company to provide lease programs for the customer. The leasing terms are flexible, with 48 months being a popular option. MiR’s distributors will continue to be responsible of first-level support, service and maintenance. In this way, not much will change for the end-customers, who will now have one more option in terms of payment for their robots, while the usual benefits from MiR’s global reach and local support will continue.
ABI Research last year estimated that the installed base for RaaS will grow from 4,442 units in 2016 to 1.3 million in 2026. The yearly revenue from RaaS providers is expected to increase from $217 million in 2016 to nearly $34bn in 2026.
John Santagate, research director for Commercial Service Robotics at IDC, said: “The Robot-as-a-Service (RaaS) model of delivering autonomous mobile robots is helping to bring automation in the form of robotics to new markets that might otherwise not be able to make investments in this technology.”
“This model allows buyers to reduce the risk of deploying robotics, as the vendors shift from selling robots to selling usage and outcomes. We see this model as a key element in the current and ongoing growth in the market as it brings this technology to buyers and markets that might not otherwise make investments in robotics.”