2018 Challenge

We are seeking to support new robotics ideas and innovations

Robots are leaving the production line and find themselves working throughout the factory, into the supply chain at one end and serving customers at the other. As a result, global sales of industrial robots increased by 16% last year, with logistics and warehousing one of the fastest-growing sectors.

Electrical and electronics, as well as automotive industries, are the main driving forces behind the growth of the logistics and warehouse robot market. PR Newswire, May 2018

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ABB Robotics are one of the major drivers in this expansion and are looking for partners with new robotics related ideas and innovations to accelerate this growth.

Ever since their conception, about 50 years ago in our company in Sweden, digitally controlled electrical robots have been at the forefront of new, exciting applications. However, we are now witnessing growth at an unprecedented level.

Global spending on robots projected to hit $87 billion by 2025. BCG 2017

Our robots are now making their way into new application areas and, most excitingly, into smaller businesses. We are driving this process with excitement and hope to see our satisfied user base expand beyond production and automation engineers to any professional across any segment. 

The main drivers for the industrial robotics market are increasing investments for industrial automation and the growing demand from small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs). M&M Industrial Robotics Market Report, May 2018

We would very much like to share this exciting journey with you and find the best way to channel your robotic idea or innovation to our existing and new customer base. Looking around and noticing the development in simplified use of computers, phones and tablets, we see a drastic change in interaction between user and machine.

This simplicity has come to the industrial environment, but we still see a huge potential and are excited to work together with others to bring recent technologies such as advanced user interfaces, artificial intelligence and virtual reality into our customer’s factories to make the use of robots simpler and easier.

We see our robots, which are traditionally fastened to the workshop floor, moving around and serving the factory in different areas. Our robots that were mainly used to manufacture cars and other heavy stuff are now used to help in logistics of the companies and warehouses. Robots can move along production lines or collect parts from warehouses or other mobile robots.

This is of course a very exciting era and calls for use of new technologies. Your idea or innovation could be the key to the next big step in robotics and we would be very happy to give you a hand and make it possible or make it faster.

These are examples of what is happening across the field of robotics, but not the only areas of interest. We would very much welcome any idea that will help to more toward a more optimized use of energy and material in the areas that we are active in and hope to hear from you for an initial first discussion.

If the thought of an ever more automated world making better use of resources excites you, please apply now.

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How does it work?

Submit your idea

Complete and submit a short application form on this site – only include information already in the public domain

Get shortlisted

We select the best ideas and ventures during August and contact them directly to invite the winners to attend our October pitch day event

Make your pitch

Pitch your idea or venture directly to ABB Robotics - we will select the best ideas or ventures to receive an offer from ABB Robotics

Get an offer

We will make you an offer which could include funding, access to robots, venture support or market access based on your needs

What’s in it for you?

Successful applicants will be invited to pitch their ideas and prototypes directly to ABB Robotics at a live pitch event in November for the opportunity to be selected to receive an IdeaHub offer. Based on the size, maturity and needs of your venture, the IdeaHub offer may include:


Investment in return for a share of equity - the level of funding will be based on what it takes to get your concept or business to the next significant milestone


We can provide access to industrial robots to further test, refine or prove your solution - we can also provide access to world-class robotics experts and shared lab space if required

Venture support

Benefit from the advice and expert support of an experienced venture capital team to develop and accelerate your concept or venture to funding and revenues

Market Access

If you are ready, we can provide support to access global markets or provide direct access to customers for in-market testing or initial sales.

Your IdeaHub offer will be designed to successfully take you, your idea and your venture to the next level of development.

Our timeline

August Applications open
November Application deadline
November Shortlisted candidates will be contacted for interviews
November Live pitch event and final selection

About ABB Robotics: