March 17, 2021

BotHiveSimulation400x275Bot-Hive, a U.K.-based online platform that connects robotics and automation solutions with buyers, has announced a partnership with Visual Components, a leading developer of 3D manufacturing simulation software. The goal of the team-up is to help break up the “U.K. automation logjam” around robots and automation.

“As the latest statistics from the International Federation of Robots (IFR) revealed, it’s clear that the U.K. is losing the race to automate,” Bot-Hive said in a statement. “The U.K. is not only losing the race, but it is barely taking place. The U.K. is so far behind, that it didn’t make the top ten, nor even the wider list that included another 11 countries.”

The partnership aims to utilize Bot-Hive’s product library that showcases which products can be viewed in simulation. The new feature enables customers to adopt a virtual “try before you buy” approach to investing in automation. Companies can set up initial consultation meetings with Bot-Hive and Visual Components teams to replicate versions of their shop floors, providing a testbed for different automation solutions, the companies said.

“The reluctance of U.K. industry to automate is well known,” said Jacques Bonfrer, co-founder and CEO of Bot-Hive. “We see a large pool of U.K. businesses in the category of wanting to automate, but not knowing where to start. Simulation is the answer because companies can cost-effectively plan how the robots will be used in their manufacturing process. Thanks to the software, they can actually see the robots working in 3D. Buying robots should no longer be trial and error, but based on firm planning.”

Visual Components, which is headquartered in Finland, develops 3D manufacturing simulation software to aid the design and validate new robotic and automation production solutions. It is used by several worldwide manufacturers, systems integrators, universities, colleges and research centers to help visualize and simulate robots in the workplace.

“We have been speaking to a number of simulation partners for the last 12 months and felt strongly that Visual Components were the right provider to partner with on this project,” said Bonfrer. “Their wide catalog of products coupled with their approach to supporting early adopters of automation makes for a very exciting partnership.”

“We believe that more and more companies will start and continue their robotics journey during 2021,” said Steve Morris, country manager (U.K. and Ireland) for Visual Components. “I know personally the value that 3D manufacturing simulation can bring. Everyone who wishes to go on their robotics and automation journey needs to start with simulation to help them design, plan, validate and de-risk any investment.