Contribute to a Smart Society

  • 8. Decent work and economic growth
  • 9. Industry innovation and infrastructure

Amid an accelerating global trend toward automation and scaling up of logistics operations, investments in alleviating labor shortages and boosting productivity are expected to grow even more in the future. The Daifuku Group will work to expand its existing domains and open new ones as it seeks to respond to ever-advancing needs in society. We will develop new, and use existing, cutting-edge technologies to further increase the value we offer to stakeholders. In doing so, we aspire to help realize a smart society.

Related Sustainable Development Goals and Targets

The following are the materialities and their related Sustainable Development Goals and Targets for one theme of the Sustainability Action Plan: Contribute to a Smart Society.

Materiality Goal Target
Promote innovative technological development and invention 8. Decent work and economic growth 8.2 Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification, technological upgrading and innovation, including through a focus on high-value added and labour-intensive sectors
Develop new business domains 9. Industry innovation and infrastructure 9.b Support domestic technology development, research and innovation in developing countries, including by ensuring a conducive policy environment for, inter alia, industrial diversification and value addition to commodities
Cater to customer needs through smart logistics 9. Industry innovation and infrastructure 9.1 Develop quality, reliable, sustainable and resilient infrastructure, including regional and transborder infrastructure, to support economic development and human well-being, with a focus on affordable and equitable access for all
9.2 Promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and, by 2030, significantly raise industry’s share of employment and gross domestic product, in line with national circumstances, and double its share in least developed countries

FY2021 Achievements

The following are our fiscal 2021 achievements in each of the materialities for the above theme of the Sustainability Action Plan. (Contribute to a Smart Society)

Sustainability Action Plan(PDF : 293KB)

FY2021 Achievements of the Sustainability Action Plan(PDF : 361KB)

  • Materiality

Promote innovative technological development and invention

  • 8. Decent work and economic growth

In terms of the breakdown of innovation investment, R&D expenditures amounted to 10.7 billion yen, and digital transformation-related investments amounted to 2.3 billion yen. In fiscal 2021, we fell short of our target due to some digital transformation-related investments yet to be finalized; however, from fiscal 2022 onward, the entire Group, including locations outside of Japan, will be working together to achieve our target.

KPIs Scope FY2021 targets FY2021 results
Innovation investment amount* Global ¥15.0 billion ¥13.0 billion
Patent registrations (cumulative total) 3,600 patents 3,726 patents
  • *R&D expenses + DX investment amount

Number of patents registered

Daifuku proactively applies for patents and acquisition rights primarily for newly developed products. We have been filing an increasing number of patent applications outside of Japan in recent years, and we currently hold patents in more than 30 countries around the world. There has been an increasing number of patent registrations in Asia, particularly China, South Korea, and Taiwan.

Transition of patents by country/region
  • Materiality

Develop new business domains

  • 9. Industry innovation and infrastructure

While some projects are still in the development, design, and prototype stages, efforts are generally progressing smoothly against the established targets.

KPIs Scope FY2021 targets FY2021 results
Penetration into new markets and new business conditions; commercialization of new products Global
  • Collaborative research with universities and companies
  • Provide new automated solutions
  • Develop new customers, expand business area globally
  • Expand service business
  • Promoted the development of new products through open innovation with multiple universities and external research institutions
  • Began supplying an in-house developed piece-picking robot
  • Expanded new customer base and global business area through strategic alliance with Germany-based AFT Industries AG
  • Service sales: +16.6 billion yen (+14%) over the previous year

Strengthening of operational base through business alliance with AFT of Germany

In February 2021, we announced a business alliance with Germany-based AFT Industries AG (AFT). Tangible results have already been achieved during fiscal year 2021, the first year of the alliance. We have leveraged AFT’s customer base of European automakers, knowledge and expertise in product standards, technology, and procurement in Europe, as well as our global network (sales, production, and service) to achieve collaboration on a project-by-project basis. At a time when the automotive industry is said to be undergoing a once-in-a-century transformation, we aim to expand our business base and capture the capital investment demand of European automakers through a mutually complementary business alliance between our two companies, and thus achieve continued growth in our business.

  • Materiality

Cater to customer needs through smart logistics

  • 9. Industry innovation and infrastructure

As technological development progresses on a global scale, we are actively developing products and solutions that incorporate cutting-edge technologies. We are making steady progress toward the targets we have set.

KPIs Scope FY2021 targets FY2021 results
Introduction of cutting-edge technology to products/services Global
  • Use wireless/5G tech and rechargeable batteries
  • Introduce high-efficiency systems and predictive maintenance systems using AI tech
  • Reduce energy consumption with more sophisticated power supply equipment
  • Make maintenance services more efficient with use of IoT
  • Conducted study on adoption of wireless/5G tech
  • Currently evaluating various types of rechargeable batteries
  • Highly-efficient transport system using AI has been developed and adopted
  • Predictive maintenance system is being trialed and data collection is underway
  • Currently developing an advanced non-contact power supply device that reduces power consumption
  • Launched maintenance services using various sensors and remote functions

Developing and introducing AI-based highly efficient transport systems

We employ AI to efficiently control a large number of vehicles that run on overhead transport lines in semiconductor factories. The software we developed in fiscal 2021 is designed to store past data, so as to always be able to predict what will happen many seconds ahead. It collects vehicle position data on a real-time basis and calculates prediction data from machine-learned travel records. This has improved accuracy in route control and increased transport volume by 10%. We introduced this software to our customers' systems and filed a patent application.