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From the Desk of RIA Chair, Catherine Morris

Robotic Industries Association 4th Quarter Updates

Apex, NC,  December 19, 2013

From the desk of the RIA Chair and Director of Automotive Sales for ATI Industrial Automation, Catherine Morris:

This will be my last quarterly update as my term as Chair ends in January. Words cannot adequately express how much I have enjoyed working with all of you and representing our industry. The last two years have flown by and we have accomplished many goals.

Membership – Two years ago membership was holding steady with around 285 member companies. We blew past the long time goal of 300 in September with 317 and end the year at some 325 member companies. Retention continues to be at the highest level ever so it is clear that people are finding value in participation and working together to grow the industry for all! 

System Integrator CertificationTwo years ago this program had just been launched. We reached our goal of 10 in year one and now have 19 certified integrators with several more expected soon! Interest in the program continues to be very high. All integrators I speak to realize the value of certification and for most the only reason they have not gone through the certification process is that business is very good now and they are too busy. They do say, however, that this must be a priority for 2014. All appreciate the opportunity to differentiate themselves and value the increased exposure they receive from Robotics Online and at Automate! Check this link for more information:  Certified Robot Integrator Program 

Automate 2015March 23 - 26, 2015 at McCormick Place in Chicago Two years ago we were working on the second of our re-invented industry trade show with an added challenge - trying to sell Chicago in January! Against all odds that show was a tremendous success. Now, even though the show is still over a year away, automation companies from around the world have reserved more than 80% of the current exhibit floor space. Leading robotics companies have already reserved more space for the Automate 2015 show than they did in 2013. This is an incredibly positive sign for our growing event and we can feel the momentum continuing to build from the 2013 show when our attendance grew 42% to more than 11,000 confirmed attendees. Besides robotics companies, we’re also seeing a large increase in early exhibitor reservations from system integrators, vision companies, and motion control companies and this is very exciting. Make sure you do not miss Automate 2015, North America’s leading automation event! Our idea to have one show where people could find all types of automation solutions is working! Automate 2015


22nd Annual Robotics Industry Forum January 22 - January 24, 2014 at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek – We are really excited about how this event has come together. 2014 is the 40th anniversary of RIA and special activities are planned to commemorate this. We have a terrific lineup of speakers and a new format. We will again be co-located with the AIA Business Conference and the MCA Business Conference and we have all benefited from having the groups together. Combined, these events will attract some 400 industry leaders from the robotics, machine vision, and motion control industries. The Forum is the premier networking event in our country so you will not want to miss this year’s event. 21st Annual Robotics Industry Forum

Safety  Between our annual National Robot Safety Conference held in October, in-house training programs, and one-day safety programs around the country, we reached a record number of people in 2013 with timely safety information based on RIA’s new American National Robot Safety Standard. Safety training and standards development will remain top priorities at RIA in 2014 and beyond.


Webinars These continue to be one of our major success stories and Adil Shafi and staff have a great lineup for 2014. The number of people that the webinars reach is incredible. If you missed any they are all archived on the Robotics Online site. You can also see what you can look forward to in 2014. Webinars


New Event – I am also happy to announce another first. RIA will host its first RIA Collaborative Robots Workshop! This event is set for April 16, 2014 in Boston. We’ve got a great lineup of speakers planned including people from Universal, Yaskawa/Motoman, KUKA, Robotiq and more. Additional information will be available soon so stay tuned.


By now you all know my mantra - I firmly believe that our association, and our industry, can only be as strong as each of us makes it! It has been exciting to see more people and more companies get involved and participate! It's clear that spreading the Automation message grows business for all of us. I have appreciated the opportunity! 



Catherine Morris

RIA Chair


For more information about RIA and the robotics industry, visit www.robotics.org or contact RIA Headquarters at 734-994-6088.



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