Thanks to the automation upgrade of the smartphone manufacturing industry and the automobile factory, the industrial robot market in China has shown a rapid growth trend in the past few years, but this growth has slowed down last year, mainly in the automotive, 3C, and general manufacturing industries. The internal market is affected by the weak macroeconomic and external demand. In the near term, the prosperity of the general equipment of the manufacturing industry has not yet shown signs of stabilization and recovery. At the same time, the Chinese robot industry has seen a trend of “low-end industry high-end industries”, and there are hidden concerns about excessive investment, blind expansion of robotics companies and low-level duplication. The problem of construction is obvious.
Capital is a double-edged sword
Since the "Made in China 2025" was proposed, the robot market has begun to be in a state of "carnival". Local governments have increased the number of robot projects, and a large amount of funds have poured in. Under the "high subsidy" and "price wars", robot companies have sprung up. Even real estate and Internet companies have a "cross-border" to share a piece of cake. Looking back at the robot industry, from the 2016 M&A boom, to the investment boom of 2017, to the investment surplus in 2018, nearly 30 times the growth of financing scale, capital inflows bring the spring breeze to the industry and also subvert the industry. Ecosystem.
This double-edged sword of capital, while promoting the rapid expansion of the robot industry, also brought a chicken feather. Investors are looking at policy subsidies and capital dividends, pursuing a “fast-forward and fast-out” return on capital. * Good investment targets can be listed in three years. Contrary to this, industrial robots are low-key traditional manufacturing industries, and the company grows slowly. It takes a long time to accumulate technology. Before the capital enters, the robot industry grows up in the exploration. Through the orderly competition of the market, some truly technical and powerful enterprises can grow and develop.
After the capital entered, some “net red” enterprises have been able to obtain huge financing without any technology or market, and use funds to expand in the industry, dig around, or engage in low-price vicious competition. Causes great damage.
Secondly, after the powerful robot companies get the financing, the unrealistic high expectations and high valuations of the investors due to the lack of understanding of the industry are also a kind of pressure. When the company is found to be growing as expected, This kind of pressure will lead to deformation of the company's actions, failure to implement its own strategy and tactics, and the company's lack of hematopoietic capacity. It can only rely on obtaining rounds of higher financing valuations to ease the investment from the previous round of investors. huge stress. In 2018, the collapse of the Sic Bo robot and the resurgence of Rethink Robotics, the originator of the collaborative robot, were affected by capital. The former was the first robotic product in China to receive the “Chinese Robot Certification”. Last year, Sic Bo Robotics was reported to have broken due to the capital chain. Deep in the collapse of the storm, the founder Wang Minggao debt high has now left the United States. The latter had a total of more than $150 million in financing, but the sales volume was low, unable to meet the expected growth, and eventually withdrew from the historical stage due to problems in the capital chain.
Is the robot's "low price" strategy feasible?
Last year, the price war of robot enterprises appeared, which led to a sharp reduction in the profits of domestic enterprises, which further led to the reduction of R&D investment. The reduction of R&D investment will in turn affect the performance and sales of products. This cycle is also the difficulty of many domestic enterprises.
In the early stage, relying on this fierce low-price strategy is obviously unfavorable to the development of the industry. Companies that implement this low-cost, volume-oriented strategy can not meet the investor's income requirements, but only lose money and drink, with the “coolness” of capital. It will inevitably face a severe test.
On the other hand, influenced by the “low-price strategy” of the domestic industrial robot market, the trend of imported robots “quantity reduction and price slip” may continue. International giants who are increasingly turning their attention to the Chinese market have already begun to prepare for price cuts. Kawasaki* is obvious. Only such companies have the capital to fight price wars and seize the Chinese market through a large amount of shipments. .
In fact, it can be seen from a series of data that although the market demand for robot automation is still rising, the Chinese robot market has clearly seen a trend of overcapacity. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, industrial robot production fell in October 2018. 3.3% has been falling for five consecutive months since June 2018. The competition pressure has increased sharply. In the long run, lowering prices is also the way for domestic industrial robots* to go. This requires cost considerations. It cannot be avoided that due to the lack of key component technologies, domestic industrial robot body manufacturers need to The procurement of foreign robot companies has resulted in a cost that is much higher than the four family self-production models. This requires the main body manufacturer or upstream parts manufacturers to make long-term plans on the technical reserves, to produce products comparable to foreign manufacturers.
How do domestic robot companies break through?
At present, foreign giants have developed to maturity, and the giants grasp the vast majority of markets and technologies, with low risks but high returns. Domestic robot manufacturers are still in the process of high-risk, low-yield start-ups to high-risk, high-yield growth. In the case of overcapacity, market stagnation, and external shocks from major foreign brands, how should domestic industrial robot companies break through?
Perhaps we can get some inspiration from the gradual return to the rational investment market. Although the financing ratio of the whole industry has dropped by nearly 50% in 2018, the financing amount is the sum of 2016 and 2017, and the financing is increasingly concentrated on For some advantageous enterprises, the financing scale of individual enterprises is increasing, mainly concentrated in emerging segments such as machine vision, collaborative robots, and AGV enterprises.
From the above field, we can easily see that these products can find the corresponding fields in the country to "apply their fists", and the ease of use is better. If you can do the above at the premise of high cost performance, I believe that domestic robots can also Discover the market that suits you.
Second, since the industrial robot industry is already a capital-intensive industry, the demand for capital is huge. In this industry context, companies in the industry must actively learn capital-related knowledge, access capital, understand capital, and be good at using capital.