Research and development

Spending on research and development totalled €92.9 million in the first half of 2017 (H1 2016: €67.5 million), which equates to 2.4 per cent of revenue. Total research and development costs of €31.5 million were expensed in the second quarter of 2017 (Q2 2016: €22.6 million), while €65.8 million was expensed in the first half of 2017 (H1 2016: €47.3 million). Capitalised development costs were offset by depreciation and amortisation of €17.0 million reported under the cost of sales in the second quarter of 2017 (Q2 2016: €12.3 million) and a total of €34.4 million in the first half of 2017 (H1 2016: €24.6 million). The number of full-time jobs in R&D stood at 1,388 as at 30 June 2017 (31 December 2016: 1,477). > TABLE 18

Research and development (R&D)


in € million

Q2 2017

Q2 2016


Q1 – Q2 2017

Q1 – Q2 2016


Research and development costs (P&L)







Capitalised development costs







Total R&D spending







R&D spending as percentage of revenue





The main R&D projects were continued in the first half of 2017. There was a particular emphasis on automation and connectivity, software development, drive technology, and the modular and platform strategy.

Industrial Trucks & Services

In the Industrial Trucks & Services business, the key focus for the premium segment is to increase customer benefit in terms of efficiency and total cost of ownership. In the volume and economy segments, the KION Group is establishing shared, cross-brand and cost-efficient platforms that keep production costs low yet allow a strong degree of regional differentiation in the industrial trucks.

Linde Material Handling extended its collaboration with French robotics developer Balyo in May. The two companies have been working together on the development and production of automated vehicles since 2015. All warehouse trucks in the Linde portfolio are now also available in automated variants, for which demand is rising. The investment pays off quickly, especially for customers that operate multiple shifts. The latest addition to the portfolio is the Linde K-MATIC order-picker truck, which was introduced in February.

At the ProMat trade fair in April, KION North America presented a total of five new Linde- and Baoli-branded trucks that have been specially developed for the North American market. These additions are making the product portfolio even more competitive.

STILL presented the first self-driving order picker, the iGo neo CX 20, at CeMAT 2017. This intelligent truck is able to recognise its environment and its operator and will follow that person, and only that person, wherever he or she goes.

In the field of drive technology, Linde Material Handling again significantly expanded its range of lithium-ion trucks and is the first manufacturer to offer aftersales, guarantees and a warranty for the whole truck, including its battery. STILL added a new product for short-distance lightweight horizontal transport to its family of electric pallet trucks.

At the LogiMAT trade fair, Linde Material Handling unveiled the Flybox inventory drone, which is designed to make stocktaking easier. The drone is connected to an automated pallet stacker so that it has a constant power supply and can always be located within the warehouse.

Supply Chain Solutions

The Supply Chain Solutions segment focuses, on the one hand, on refining its central software solution, Dematic iQ. On the other hand, the automated supply chain solutions, including their components, are being constantly enhanced in order to achieve even faster processes, seamless integration of all production and logistics steps and even greater productivity while using the same amount of space.

In the second quarter of 2017, Dematic published an update for its Dematic IQ software (version 2.4). Among the aims of the update are to make it faster to replenish stock on the shop floor, to reduce product damage and to allow more products to be stored in the same space. At ProMat 2017, Dematic Egemin presented a new automated truck configuration that forms part of the compact range. This product range is based on a modular system that offers particularly fast delivery times and low up-front costs.