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ABB expanding U.S. robotics factory to serve the Americas

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Close to 90 per cent of robots delivered to customers in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and South America will soon be made in Auburn Hills, Michigan. PHOTO courtesy ABB.

ABB is starting construction on the expansion of its existing North American robotics headquarters and manufacturing facility in Auburn Hills, Michigan.  

The project is expected to be completed in Nov. 2023 and represents an investment of $20 million.

This investment will see the latest digital and automation technologies implemented to manufacture the next generation robots in the U.S., for the Americas, streamlining the delivery process and reducing lead times. Close to 90 per cent of robots delivered to customers in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and South America will soon be made in Auburn Hills. The plant will utilize flexible, modular production cells that are digitally connected and networked and served by intelligent autonomous mobile robots. A.I.-powered robotic systems will take on tasks such as screw-driving, assembling and material handling.

“Our investment is a significant step in accelerating ABB Robotics’ global leadership in developing and manufacturing cutting-edge robotic solutions in the U.S., for the Americas,” said Sami Atiya, President of ABB Robotics and Discrete Automation. “As the global mega trends of labour shortages, uncertainty, the near and reshoring of production, and a desire to operate more sustainably accelerate, more businesses are turning to automation to build resilience while improving efficiency and flexibility. Our expanded facility will help us to better serve customers in the U.S. and across the Americas, giving them access to innovative automated solutions.”

Adding to the $14 billion ABB has already invested in the U.S. since 2010, the latest investment in its robotics headquarters and factory will benefit customers in the Americas, particularly those in growth sectors including electric vehicles, healthcare, packaging and logistics. With the expansion set to significantly increase the factory’s production capacity, it responds to the increased demand for automation from 70 per cent of U.S. businesses looking to bring production closer to home, as revealed by ABB Robotics’ survey of 1,610 executives in the U.S. and Europe in June 2022.

ABB Robotics moved into the 538,000-square-foot building in 1993 and opened the manufacturing plant in 2015, becoming the first global industrial robotics company to fully commit to a North American robotics-production footprint. 

ABB’s footprint in the U.S. is more than 20,000 employees, over more than 40 sites nationally.

“The expanded facility will feature the most advanced technology available, with A.I.-enabled robots and smart digital manufacturing systems supporting the production and manufacture of state-of-the-art customer solutions,” said John Bubnikovich, ABB United States Robotics Division President. “Almost every aspect of the site will be upgraded to enrich our efforts to attract, retain and nurture the best automation talent, while creating a U.S. manufacturing hub and headquarters befitting of a global leader in automation.”

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