From Automate 2011 in Chicago: Industrial robotic companies mostly recovered from 2009 lows. Japan is the exception and China accounts for 127% of the growth. Much of the recovery was due to the renewal of facilities for newer hybrid cars in the auto industry.
From InnoRobo 2011 in Lyon, France: The service sector didn’t go down as much as the industrial companies did — it grew steadily during the recession. But 2/3 of the growth was in defense, security and space.
Bruno Bonnell, Pres. of the French Union of Service Robotics (Syrobo) said that the service robotic market will multiply to 30 times the current rate this decade and be a $100 billion/year industry by 2020.
Much more, including economic drivers propelling this growth, here.