ABB has announced that it is planning to invest € 100 mn (about Rs 804 crore) to build a state-of-the-art innovation and training campus in Austria by 2020. The company will make its largest organic investment in industrial automation at home of Bernecker + Rainer Industrie-Elektronik GmbH (B&R), which ABB acquired a year ago. This investment shapes ABB’s leadership position in machine and factory automation, and lays the foundation for about 1,000 new high-tech jobs, it noted.
The new innovation and training campus will develop technologies for the factory of the future, based on ABB Ability, in which production will be undertaken autonomously by smart and cloud-connected machines and robots. ABB said that it is delivering on its Next Level strategy with this investment, which defines innovation as a key driver of profitable growth.
ABB said its new R&D campus will be home to ultra-modern laboratories, which will develop and test new automation technologies, from industrial control systems up to machine learning and artificial intelligence. It will also have an Automation Academy to train and educate customers, partners and employees in these technologies. The ground-breaking ceremony for the facility is planned for the summer of 2018, and the campus is expected to be up and running in the course of 2020. Once complete, the Eggelsberg site will be one of ABB’s largest R&D centres.
ABB acquired B&R, then the largest independent provider of product- and software-based open-architecture solutions for machine and factory automation worldwide, in July 2017. Today, B&R is integrated into ABB’s Industrial Automation division as its global Machine & Factory Automation business unit. With the combined portfolios, ABB is today the only industrial automation provider offering customers the entire spectrum of technology and software solutions around measurement, control, actuation, robotics, electrification and digitalization.
Ulrich Spiesshofer, CEO, ABB, said that with its € 100 mn investment, the company is strengthening the pillars of innovation and people. In addition to the new R&D capacity, ABB’s investment will expand B&R’s Automation Academy, offering customers, partners and employees globally unique education and training programs, he added.
“I am delighted that ABB continues to write and accelerate our success story with this historic investment,” said Josef Rainer, Co-founder, B&R.