From day one Orocos has been 'industry friendly'. Orocos is Free Software, but any application (or component) derived from it remains property of the creator. In no case an application builder is required to pay a licensing fee for Orocos software.Proper licensing is in place to support this licensing model.
The KDL and OCL software are licensed as LGPL software. In practice, this means that, when you distribute this software, you are required to distribute any changes you make to this software as well under the same license. The derived work may be distributed under any license you see fit.
Both the RTT and BFL software are licensed as GPL + runtime exception, which is exactly the same license as the GNU Standard C++ library (which is used by any C++ program running under Linux), and has in practice the same intentions as the LGPL license. The technical reason we could not longer use the LGPL license for RTT/BFL software was that the LGPL is not compatible with C++ templates, which are used extensively in the RTT/BFL libraries. The 'runtime exception' says explicitly that using the C++ templates (or any other function) of the RTT software does not make your derived work GPL. The derived work may be distributed under any license you see fit.
The copyright of the Orocos source code is shared by over 20 independent contributors in various countries.