MindSphere, Azure, AWS, and Axoom – names like these stand for the digital transformation of industry, proving that networking and collaboration are key prerequisites for new business models based on the interaction of IT and industry. Which is why HANNOVER MESSE 2018 is shining a bright spotlight on the topic of "Integrated Industry – Connect & Collaborate" in its IAMD (Integrated Automation, Motion & Drives) and Digital Factory halls, where companies will be showcasing their own self-transformation processes as well as their latest solutions and business models resulting from the combination of IT with integrated automation.
"IT and industry originally converged from two different places," says Arno Reich, Global Director of IAMD and Digital Factory and a member of the HANNOVER MESSE team. "But thanks to the influence of digital transformation, they are now pulling in the same direction and can no longer be viewed as separate entities. Automation providers now have enormous software competence and are upgrading their products and services based on digital technologies. At the same time, IT and Internet companies are turning to industry and adapting their previous offerings due to the attractiveness of this new application area – the keyword being 'platform economics'," he adds.
To tap the potential of digital transformation in industry, companies need to rethink and change. As a result, automation providers are also becoming software providers and mechanical engineering firms are offering digital products and services. VDMA has extensive data on how the mechanical engineering industry is driving digitization forward. The association's studies show how apps, big data analytics and digital platforms are rapidly gaining in importance. Around 20 percent of mechanical engineering companies are moreover planning to spin off their digital business projects into corporate subsidiaries.
"We are currently experiencing a sea change," says Rainer Glatz, managing director of the Electrical Automation and Software and Digitization associations within VDMA. "For a number of years, digitization technologies like PLM, MES, and CRM have had to contend with the argument that they are too expensive. This has changed. Digitization is increasingly seen as an engine for new business models as well as additional revenue."
In addition to IT giants such as Microsoft, SAP, IBM, or Amazon Web Services, whose platforms and tools support digital transformation in industry, industrial enterprises have also set out to offer digital solutions and platforms via their subsidiaries. The new ideas emerging from this clearly stem from the networking and cooperation of myriad players.
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