Swiss power and automation technology provider ABB is set to invest €100m to build a modern innovation and training campus for Bernecker + Rainer Industrie-Elektronik (B&R) in Eggelsberg, Austria.
The company had acquired B&R in July 2017 and integrated it into ABB’s Industrial Automation division as its global Machine & Factory Automation business unit.
ABB said that this will be the largest organic investment in industrial automation by the company and is expected to create 1,000 new high-tech jobs in Austria.
The campus will develop technologies for the factory of the future, based on ABB Ability, in which production will be taken up autonomously by smart and cloud-connected machines and robots.
The new campus will cover 35,000m² and accommodate modern facilities. Modern R&D laboratories will develop and test new automation technologies, industrial control systems and machine learning and artificial intelligence.
In addition, an Automation Academy will be established to train customers, partners and employees in these technologies.
The company expects to break ground on the new campus this summer and complete the construction by 2020.
The Eggelsberg site will be one of the largest research and development centres of ABB.
The company invests $1.4bn in R&D annually. B&R has more than 1,000 employees working in R&D and application development.
ABB expects the development of disruptive technologies to enable the company to better serve the $20bn machine and factory automation market.
ABB CEO Ulrich Spiesshofer said: “B&R has had an excellent start within ABB and has exceeded our expectations. We are well on track to achieve our goal of revenues of more than $1bn soon.
“With our €100m investment, we are strengthening this dynamic and the pillars of this success story: innovation and people.”
Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said: “With this clear commitment to the Eggelsberg location, ABB has established itself as the market leader in automation in Austria.
“True to its word, the company is now making an investment that is of tremendous importance to Austria as a business location of international standing.
“This is the starting signal for a location offensive in the key segment of digital industry. It is an important impulse for the creation of highly qualified new jobs and the positioning of Austria as a high-tech location.”