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Kuka aims to lead in China as robotics move from industry to home

Key Points
  • Chinese-owned German robotics firm Kuka says it wants to lead its category in the world's second-largest economy
A Kuka AG robotic arm pours a bottle of beer into a glass during a demonstration at the International Robot Exhibition 2017 at the Tokyo Big Sight on November 29, 2017 in Tokyo, Japan.
Tomohiro Ohsumi | Getty Images

Robots are changing the way people live and Kuka wants a big slice of the pie in China, where the company is gunning to lead the market.

"Our goal is really to be number one in China," said Till Reuter, CEO of the German firm that was acquired last year by Chinese electrical appliance manufacturer Midea.

China is Kuka's largest market with an estimated growth rate of 20 to 25 percent a year.

Reuter said he is upbeat on the opportunities in China amid the evolution of how man and machines are working together to benefit all parties, he told CNBC on the sidelines of the Fortune Global Forum in Guangzhou, China.

"We are coming from the industrial side, so I think industrial side was one of the big promoters of robotics in the past. Now what we have seen — and also why we have joined force with Midea — we see clearly that industry and consumer are getting much closer together," said Reuter.

Midea's purchase of Kuka was met with some in the European country.