President Keith Wanner attended the 15th
Industry Forum in Orlando, Florida in early November. It proved a unique opportunity for networking with industry leaders and gaining perspective about future trends.
Wanner said the casual atmosphere at the Forum provided the perfect setting for him to talk with top executives from major robot manufacturing
companies and connect with suppliers. The RIA-hosted Forum is designed to facilitate what it calls "Connectioneering."
In addition to chatting it up with representatives from Kuka
, and Motoman
, etc., Wanner had an opportunity to hear from distinguished speakers, including the new
RIA president, Richard Litt. Ford Motor Company, Corning Incorporated, and the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute were also among those lecturing at the event.
Wanner said many speakers were projecting a gloomy forecast for the robotics
industry. Some were convinced that economic changes and the depreciation of the dollar would lead to drastic cutbacks in automotive manufacturing - impacting robotic sales. Speakers encouraged companies to broaden their scope. Wanner said he agreed. "Everyone's got to start thinking globally, not just locally," he said.
Wanner said he was not fazed by the dire predictions. "It could benefit our niche market as people look to automate
more inexpensively," he said. "Used robots
- that's a good place to be whether the economy is good or bad." Wanner said he believes RobotWorx
' trend of web-based marketing approach will continue to work well for the company.