Smart Factory: A new era in manufacturing        


Industry 4.0 has opened up a new era with countless opportunities in areas such as automation, smart factory, etc. for those who know how to seize. In readiness for the 4th industrial revolution,  in early 2018, FPT established FPT Smart Factory (FSF) unit which belongs to FPT Software with the aim of researching and developing new technologies, building competitive capabilities and implementing the plan of approaching customers.

New era with countless opportunities in Smart Factory.

According to Deloitte Insights, the Smart Factory is a tremendous evolution from a traditional automated production system into a flexible and interconnected system which continuously connect and process data from production and business activities. Thanks to this system, business production activities will be more efficient, more flexible, reduce downtime, and be capable of predicting and self-adjustment.As reported by PWC, the Smart Factory’s global market will grow up 10.4% and reach $75 billion by 2020, in such areas as Electronics, Engineering & Construction, Transportation & Logistics, Automotive, Industrial Manufacturing, and Aerospace.

Percentage of companies expected to adopt digitization and integration of Industrial 4.0 by 2020. Source: PWC.

With a promising future on Smart Factory, FPT Software decided to promote research and development, and to enhance capabilities in this area.

Capability expansion in key markets

In the European market, FPT aims to participate in smart factory, intelligent traffic, education and insurance projects in Slovakia. Among those projects,  a highlight is a collaborative project between FPT and one UK-based company that supplies mono-gas and multi-gas detectors, together with software solutions to prevent gas hazards.

FPT has developed a MindSphere-based application software to manage the supervision team and reporting system which allows enterprises to use field data accurately whenever they make a decision. This application can integrate data from a simple simulator, enabling users to use different view modes.

In November 2017, Prime Minister of Slovakia, Peter Pellegrini during Vietnamese trip.

Furthermore, in the APAC market, H. – a large economic corporation of Korea decided to cooperate with FPT in areas of Smart Factory, Robotics, IoT, Big Data, and Security. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed on July 17, 2012, in areas such as finance, technology, and data-driven business. 

Becoming a strategic partner with many global corporations

In order to promote this strategy, Smart Factory team has strengthened its capability by establishing relationships with major partners in the industry such as Siemens, AWS, GE, Toshiba, and NEC, etc. In particular, they have especially focused on Siemens with the MindSphere platform, PLM (Project Lifecycle Management), and MES (Manufacturing Execution System).

Figure 4: In March 2017, officially engaged FPT into Siemens.

On July 2017, FPT and Siemens signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for cooperation in the use and deployment of MindSphere and the Cloud-based Open Internet of Things Operating System for all global customers. With this MoU, FPT becomes a partner of MindSphere in many aspects such as Consulting, Application Development, System Integration, Technology Development and Connectivity Development. In addition, many other activities between the two groups have been organized. In the first quarter of 2018, FPT Software has participated in 2 Siemens Simatic IT R&D Suite and Teamcenter training courses.

In February 2018, the FSF’s 11 members attended the Siemens Simatic IT R&D Suite training course.

Serious investment in R&D

R&D activities of Smart Factory unit are focusing on IP projects. Specifically, the Smart Factory Suite version 1.0 (Smart Factory support solution version 1.0) will be released with features such as predictive maintenance, simulated production, quality control, robot integration, unmanned aerial vehicles with core technologies including IoT – Digital Twin, AI – Deep Learning, and Big Data – prediction with large datasets.

Smart Factory R&D.

These key research activities are selected based on the results of market analysis and the needs of potential customers, enabling to increase productivity, operate flexibly and efficiently, reduce time-to-market, increase competitiveness, reduce the error rate and operational interruption.

Following the strategic direction, R&D activities will be implemented to perfect the product so that it can be delivered to the market, step by step building FPT’s own products.

Smart Factory – A strategic move

IoT, Industry 4.0 and especially Smart Factory will be a great opportunity for FPT to become a leading IT/OT service company on a global scale.

Human resources for Smart Factory currently lacks 600,000 people in the Group of Seven (G7) members, and this is the opportunity for FPT to reduce the gap with leading competitors such as TATA, Infosys, Wipro, Accenture, etc. from 20 years down to 2 years or even equal to them. Thereby, FPT can increase revenue by headcount to competitors levels at $50,000 a year.

With the power and the vast influence of IoT, Smart Factory will be the opportunity that opens a new future for FPT in the upcoming years.

About the author:

Le Tran Nguyen – Chief Digital Transformation Officer at FPT Software

Mr. Le Tran Nguyen is the Chief Digital Transformation Officer at FPT Software. He is responsible for Smart Factory services to serve strategic clients in various industries such as telecommunications, finance, government, and education. Prior to this role, Mr. Nguyen had led various business development roles as the country cloud leader, CTO of IBM Vietnam.

(Published on the FPT Technology Magazine, FPT TechInsight No.2)

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