The content displayed on this website is exclusively directed at qualified investors, as defined in the swiss collective investment schemes act of 23 june 2006 ("cisa") and its implementing ordinance, or at “independent asset managers” which meet additional requirements as set out below. Qualified investors are in particular regulated financial intermediaries such as banks, securities dealers, fund management companies and asset managers of collective investment schemes and central banks, regulated insurance companies, public entities and retirement benefits institutions with professional treasury or companies with professional treasury.
The contents, however, are not intended for non-qualified investors. By clicking "I agree" below, you confirm and acknowledge that you act in your capacity as qualified investor pursuant to CISA or as an “independent asset manager” who meets the additional requirements set out hereafter. In the event that you are an "independent asset manager" who meets all the requirements set out in Art. 3 para. 2 let. c) CISA in conjunction with Art. 3 CISO, by clicking "I Agree" below you confirm that you will use the content of this website only for those of your clients which are qualified investors pursuant to CISA.
Representative in Switzerland of the foreign funds registered with the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority ("FINMA") for distribution in or from Switzerland to non-qualified investors is Robeco Switzerland AG, Josefstrasse 218, 8005 Zürich, and the paying agent is UBS Switzerland AG, Bahnhofstrasse 45, 8001 Zürich. Please consult www.finma.ch for a list of FINMA registered funds.
Neither information nor any opinion expressed on the website constitutes a solicitation, an offer or a recommendation to buy, sell or dispose of any investment, to engage in any other transaction or to provide any investment advice or service. An investment in a Robeco/Robeco Switzerland product should only be made after reading the related legal documents such as management regulations, articles of association, prospectuses, key investor information documents and annual and semi-annual reports, which can be all be obtained free of charge at this website, at the registered seat of the representative in Switzerland, as well as at the Robeco/Robeco Switzerland offices in each country where Robeco has a presence. In respect of the funds distributed in Switzerland, the place of performance and jurisdiction is the registered office of the representative in Switzerland.
This website is not directed to any person in any jurisdiction where, by reason of that person's nationality, residence or otherwise, the publication or availability of this website is prohibited. Persons in respect of whom such prohibitions apply must not access this website.
Imagine a whole new world. A world in which self-driving cars populate the streets, artificial intelligence makes production faster and smarter, sun and wind fuel local production and cybersecurity keeps us safe. The newly launched Robeco Global Industrial Innovation Equities strategy invests in the companies that are making this happen.
Robeco Global Industrial Innovation Equities selects long-term growth trends driven by demographic, technological or regulatory changes. Lead portfolio manager Marco van Lent and Henk Grootveld see a number of trends that will change the face of production, shaping what they call the fourth industrial revolution. While the first industrial revolution was marked by the shift from manual to mechanical production, the second one by mass production and the third one by automation, the fourth industrial revolution is all about the next stage of automation, with the advent of robots, the Internet of Things and cyber-physical systems.
Within this transition, Van Lent and Grootveld discern four disruptive trends, i.e. Robotics, Digital Manufacturing, Energy Transition and Cybersecurity. Investing in multiple trends rather than one benefits the portfolio’s diversification and increases its breadth.
The first trend focuses on robots, co-bots, automation, advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and autonomous cars.
The portfolio managers foresee that robots will replace most heavy-duty work still done by humans. And this will promote the return of local production. After all, whereas labor costs differ greatly from one country to another, the price of robots is more or less equal. In terms of costs, it doesn’t matter so much whether a robot sews a pair of jeans together in Beijing or Chicago. For the US market, the latter is even more attractive because of lower transport costs and shorter delivery times. Embracing robot technology and automation is the solution for both a shrinking labor force and rising labor costs, as robots become smarter and cheaper.
The second trend revolves around Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things (the interconnection via the Internet of computing devices in everyday objects), Digital Infrastructure and Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality.
Factories are becoming smarter due to new digital production techniques. Market research company IDC predicts that 75% of all enterprises and independent software vendors will include Artificial Intelligence (AI) functionality in at least one application by 2018. That is next year. AI will allow faster decision making, productivity gains, pattern detection (allowing companies to make suggestions to their clients) and increased data monetization.
The third trend is about solar and wind energy, energy storage and the smart grid.
Renewable energy is rapidly becoming cheaper. Bloomberg New Energy Finance expects wind and solar energy to be cheaper than natural gas by 2020 and cheaper than coal by 2024. The increased use of renewable sources in electricity generation requires heavy investments in ‘smart grids’, as renewable generation is inherently unpredictable. A smart grid is an electrical grid which uses digital information and controls technology, such as smart meters and renewable energy, to improve the reliability of the grid.
The fourth and final trend is cybersecurity.
Recent hacks upsetting the functioning of hospitals, telecommunications companies, railways and airlines expose our vulnerability to cyber-attacks. This vulnerability has increased rapidly with the advance of cloud computing and the Internet of Things. Cybersecurity has become a necessity and not surprisingly, IT spending on security has grown substantially over the past ten years.
The average age of production facilities, especially in the US, has never been as old as today, as most investments were postponed due to the Global Financial Crisis. In addition, demographic developments ensure a long-term need for automation and the strongest robot penetration is found in countries with shrinking labor markets. The technologies to make a new, smarter and more efficient way of producing possible are developing quickly. Populist governments are supporting this development. Trump’s America first and China’s shift to a more domestic consumption-driven economy are kick-starting the industry of the future.