Team Finland Future Watch Report for SMEs: Advanced Manufacturing ecosystems, initiatives and case studies in Germany
ecosystems, initiatives and case
studies in Germany
Alun Jones, Senior Consultant
Table of contents
Project goals, approach, team p. 4 - 6
Project objective and team members p. 5
Project approach p. 6
Executive summary p. 7
German industrial base p. 8 - 9
German industrial sectors p. 9
Background and history p. 10 - 14
Views of industry leaders p. 11
Industrie 4.0 - German perspective p. 12
Readiness for Industrie 4.0 p. 13
Revolution, vision or reality? p. 14
Overview Industrie 4.0 ecosystem p. 15 - 16
Ecosystem and project examples p. 16
Programmes, clusters, forums and smart factories p. 17 - 29
Table of contents
Case studies p. 30 - 33
AGILITA p. 31
AutASS p. 32
AutoBauLog p. 33
Industrie 4.0 from an SME perspective p. 34 - 36
IHK Munich p. 35
IHK Karlsruhe p. 36
Services and further innovation stories in manufacturing ecosystem p. 37 - 39
Services p. 38
Virtual Fort Knox p. 39
Findings p. 40 - 42
Conclusions p. 41
Recommendations p. 42
Appendices p. 43 - 45
Project objectives, approach, team
Project objectives and team members
The objective of this project has been to study the ecosystem in Germany with regard to advanced manufacturing
The study involved a top-down analysis of the current situation, including the overriding political framework,
participating government ministries and departments, official programmes, networks and case studies.
Information has been gathered by a combination of networking and events, desk research, official reports and other
Input gained from research and dialogue has been summarised in the following slides in order to help TEKES identify
the status quo, best practice and highlight opportunities for Finnish companies in the German market.
TEKES team members
Kari Komulainen, Director, Growth companies, email@example.com
Jukka Salminiitty, Counselor, Innovations / Head of Tekes Washington D.C., Jukka.firstname.lastname@example.org
Finpro team members
Lasse Baldauf, Vice President, Head of Region USA, email@example.com
Alun Jones, Senior Consultant, firstname.lastname@example.org
As a first step, an analysis of the ecosystem in Germany involved a desk study in order to gain an overview of
initiatives conducted to date and understand the current status quo.
The above research was subsequently used to identify the leading stakeholders, networks, events and German
companies playing an active role in promoting advanced manufacturing. This information was supplemented with
additional data from trade organisations and other sources in order to gain a deeper understanding of the state of
play in advance manufacturing.
A whole day of seminars on the industrial internet was attended in Aachen in May in order to gain an insider
perspective on research activities in Germany. Furthermore, interviews was conducted with the Chambers of
Commerce and Industry in Germany (Munich/Bavaria and Karlsruhe branches), in order to gain an SME-perspective
on advanced manufacturing.
Industrie 4.0 & Industrial Internet Collaboration Forum 2014 at the RWTH Aachen, one of the leading three technical
universities in Germany (May 2014)
Embedded Systems Lösungen für Industrie 4.0, an event organised by Bayern Innovativ, 10 Networks comprising
approximately 80,000 customers from 40,000 companies and 80 network organisations, national and international
Germany’s GDP of 2735.8 bn Euro in 2013 represents 21%
of the EU, or 29% of the eurozone GDP.
As the fourth largest economy worldwide manufacturing
plays an important role, contributing around 20% to GDP,
and was the second largest exporter in the world in 2013
behind China, and ahead of the USA. Sectors with a
strong influence here include mechanical & equipment
production, electrical and electronic industry, automobile
In 2012 the German Government launched its Industrie
4.0 programme as part of its high-tech strategy to
embrace next generation manufacturing based on the
digitalisation and integration of all stakeholder networks
to achieve smart industry. Germany thus acknowledged
the significance of advance manufacturing for the
country‘s future wellbeing within the Internet of Things.
Whether Industrie 4.0 is indeed a revolution or merely a
vision is a matter of debate. Little doubt remains,
however, that the digitalisation of all processes
surrounding industrial production, supply, distribution,
sales and services will depend in large measure on the
Cyber physical systems (CPS), smart factories, embedded
manufacturing systems, big data, the cloud
A series of funding programmes, networks, clusters and
initiatives are already in place, largely driven by PPP
programmes under the leadership of leading companies,
research organisations and academic institutes.
Many initiative for SMEs are also in place, although
smaller companies often have other priorities, where
little knowledge of Industrie 4.0 exists – automating
industrial processes is often key for the day-to-day
survival of SMEs.
Other challenges facing companies include re-
organisation of business processes in future to make use
of huge amounts of data currently not being leveraged.
Many companies are likely to become services
organisations, with huge implications for everyday
The multifaceted nature of all Industrie 4.0 components
offers opportunities for Finnish companies in areas such
as the following:
Industrial apps, sensors & embedded technology, big data,
modularised production systems, RFID, IT security and
interfaces between production and control systems.
Deepening cooperation with German research
organisations, universities, clusters and other
programmes also offer excellent opportunities for Finnish
companies to position themselves at an early stage in a
Furthermore, organisations such as FIMECC – and
possible the new Finpro organisation – can play a crucial
role in future with regard to identifying opportunities,
networks and clusters that correspond to similar Finnish
programmes, and enabling contact and cooperation.
German industrial sectors
The four sectors shown above make large contributions to the German economy and will play an
important role in the development of Industrie 4.0
The automobile industry alone contributes around 360 billion Euro p.a. to the above turnover,
corresponding to ca. 20 percent of German industrial revenue
Machinery and equipment is another large sector, contributing 209 billion Euro in turnover in 2012
and employing almost 1m employees in around 6.300 companies
Source: „Leading-Edge Cluster it‘s OWL: Practical examples of Industry
4.0 development at it‘s OWL“, Christoph Plass; www.gtai.de
Views of industry leaders
In the past few years a series of definitions on the future industrial environment have emerged from
These definitions vary from Industrial Internet, to Internet of Everything and even Industrie 4.0
Industrie 4.0 is a programme developed by government and industry in Germany to embrace next
generation manufacturing based on the digitalisation and integration of all stakeholder networks to
achieve smart industry
Source: „Finnish understanding regarding Industrial Internet“, Heikki
Ailisto, Research Professor, VTT Technical Research of Finland
Industrie 4.0 – German perspective
Germany‘s industrial base with a strong manufacturing sector provides a solid
foundation to the country‘s economic and social wellbeing.
Based against a backdrop of high IT competence, embedded systems know-how and
automation engineering, Germany is ideally placed to consolidate and expand its
position in the manufacturing engineering industry.
The German Government recognises the opportunities – and threats – that future
developments pose to its industrial base and has established the Industrie 4.0 working
group as part of ist high-tech strategy.
This is based on the notion that in future, businesses will establish global networks
that incorporate machinery, warehousing systems and production facilities in the form of
cyber physical systems (CPS), a concept that includes software, sensor-, processor- and
These systems compromise smart machines, storage systems and production facilities,
thus improving industrial processes in manufacturing, engineering, material usage and
supply chain & lifecycle management.
Smart factories are already beginning to appear – smart products are uniquely
identifiable, know their own history, current states and alternative routes to achieving
their target state.
Embedded manufacturing systems are vertically networked with business processes in
factories and companies and horizontally conneced to dispersed value networks that are
managed in real time, from order placement through to outboud logistics.
Smart factories allow individual customer requirements to be met, thus allowing even
one-off items to be manufactured profitably.
Due to the heavy reliance on IT systems and data, there is general agreement that big
data – and therefore the cloud – is a prerequisite for Industrie 4.0.
Source: „Umsetzungsempfehlungen für das Zukunftsprojekt Industrie
4.0“; Forschungsunion & acatech.
„The core of Industrie 4.0 is
made of real-time
intelligent, horizontal and
vertical networking of
humans, machines, objects
and ITC systems to enable
dynamic management of
Readiness for Industrie 4.0
With an industrial share of value added
corresponding to 23% in 2011, Germany is
at the top end of the scale in Europe, along
with a few Eastern European countries.
Whereas the manufacturing share of
GDP is shown on the horizontal axis on the
left, the vertical axis represents the
Industry 4.0 readiness index.
This is calculated by considering values
such as production process sophistication,
degree of automation, workforce
readiness and innovation intensity,
combined with high value added, industry
openness, innovation network and
Source: „THINK ACT Industry 4.0. The new industrial revolution. How
Europe will succeed„ (Roland Berger Strategy Consultants)
* Ireland is a special case since several large pharmaceutical companies contribute heavily to a low overall
Revolution, vision or reality?
Despite the fact that the German Government is referring to the fourth industrial revolution in the
next 10-20 years, some industrial experts prefer to talk of a vision that could be realised by around
In large companies, fully networked production is already reality, in smaller companies the reality is
Although 8 from 10 universities and companies are convinced that Industrie 4.0 will become reality
by 2025, a survey by PWC shows other figures – the survey sees Germany as lagging behind some
other leading nations. 50% of companies are planning to network their production, but only 20%
have already introduced a smart factory.
Some of the strongest barriers to Industrie 4.0 include IT security problems, missing norms and
standards as well as qualification issues.
A further problem for smaller companies is that the whole issue has been pushed and promoted to
date by IT experts, with machine and equipment producers only playing a minor role.
However, automation experts such as Siemens, Bosch Rexroth, Pilz or Festo are already working full-
speed to develop practical solutions. e.g. Bosch has attempted to create a bridge between
automisation and IT with its Open Core Engineering interface technology.
The modular nature of smart production means that modifications to individual plant or machine
parts have huge implications for the control systems. This is an area where Pilz has tried to create a
corresponding SW solution with its PAS4000.
The integration of all production-related processes and stakeholders via cyber physical systems
(CPS) is the ultimate complicated step. However, Siemens‘ smart factories in Amberg and Chengdu
have already acomplished this by means of an integrated digital platform.
Source: „Werkstücke der Zukunft. Industrie 4.0 hat begonnen“;
Ecosystem and project examples
• First mentioned at the Hannover Fair in 2011,
Industrie 4.0 is key part of the high-tech strategy
2020 and a project that was officially launched
there in 2013.
• The programme is coordinated by the Federal
Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy as well as
the Federal Ministry of Education and Research
• 200m Euro have been made available for the
Industrie 4.0 project
Universities and Research Organisations
High Tech Strategy 2020
Includes projects such as – National Roadmap Embedded Systems (2009), Digital Product memory, Changeable Logistics
Systems, Autonomic Computing and Industrie 4.0. Also excellence clusters such as „Integrative Production Technology for
High Wage Countries“, „Cognition for Technical Systems“, Intelligent Technical Systems (It‘s OWL)
• it‘s OWL is a leading cluster financed by the Federal
Ministry of Education and Research
• The cluster includes 174 companies, universities
and further partners
• A total of 45 intelligent technical systems projects
are coordinated and currently running in order to
help make Industrie 4.0 reality
• A large number of projects and clusters involve PP
• Projects are conducted with the cooperation of
well-known technical universities and research
institutes (examples above), together with
• The approach is very applied in nature, where
new products, systems and networks are
developed in close cooperation with all
Programmes, clusters, forums and smart factories
Autonomik for Industrie 4.0 (SME programme)
Definition and background
• AUTONOMICS is a funding programme of the Federal Ministry of
Economics and Technology (BMWi).
• As part of the AUTONOMICS competition (autonomous, simulation-
based systems for small and medium-sized enterprises) the Ministry
selected fourteen winning pilot schemes.
• With this initiative, the Ministry wants to promote research and
development activities to speed up the development and broad use of
ICT-based technologies and services along the whole supply chain to
enhance the autonomy of user systems.
• With the aid of an independent expert jury, 14 projects
were chosen, involving a total of 80 companies and
• The selected R&D projects focus on the following
• The projects are required to base their research on
prevailing robotics and ICT technology and use existing
modelling, simulation and visualisation methods.
See selection of case studies slides
for more details
Cyber Physical Systems (CyProS)
CyProS is a research programme financed
by the Federal Ministry of Education and
Manufacturing companies form the backbone of the
German economy. The trend to customised products
and faster delivery times means hugely increased
international competition. The CyProS project has been
conceived in order to develop cyber-physical systems
and a conceptual and methodological basis for their
operation under real production conditions.. The
development and introduction of cyber-physical
production systems (CPS) helps to deal not only with
increased competition, but will also lead to a
sustainable and significant increase in the prodction and
flexibility of manufacturing companies.
A consortium of 20 institutes and companies involves the following
CyProS has three goals, as follows:
1. Development of reference architecture and a
representative spectrum of cyber-physical system
modules for production and logistics systems
2. Preparation of an universal approach, tools and
platforms for the implementation of cyber-physical
3. Development of a technical and methodological basis
for the economic use of cyber-physical production
systems and their implementation in a real production
of CPS modules
& running of
evaluation of CPS
based control for
machines into the
SME Robotics is an initiative consisting of
major European robot manufacturers and
research institutes. It is developing technical
foundations for intelligent robot solutions
suitable for SME scale production.
Project background & goals
The project is based in Stuttgart and aims to simplify the
deployment of robotic applications for production in SME
manufacturing. The goal is to allow SMEs to benefit from
the advantages of automation, e.g. high efficiency, high
quality, streamlined processes, but still allowing for small
volume production. The core of the vision lies in the
SMErobotics IT-toolchain. Robot manufacturers and
system integrators will be able to build more robust and
self-adapting robots & systems, enabling workers in SMEs
to (re)configure, setup and use novel and robust robotic
The consortium of 14 organisations includes the players shown
Assembly Assistant – robot system to relieve workers of
repetitive assembly tasks
CoWeldRob – Welding robot assistant offering constant
quality welding, also for small manufacturing volumes
Software Components for SMEs – Software components of
assembly sequence planning and grasp planning
Collaborative Machining – Different types of robots
communicating & working together over neutral and
Symbiotic human-robot interaction – Enables human robot
cooperation both in teaching phase and during execution
up 2010 for future
research inst. Focus
here on non-linear &
hybrid control. Also
system ID and
control Source: www.smerobotics.org
RWTH Aachen University
• Amongst the leading technical universities in Germany, with the
status of an „Excellence University“.
• 800.000m² of campus space is currently being developed to house 19
research clusters, of which the following are already in operation –
Logistics, Production technology, Biomedical technology, Photonics,
Sustainable energy, heavy plant engines.
• The research campus already involves 120 companies, both large and
small. Also, 4 Fraunhofer institutes are based in Aachen.
• RWTH attracted 350m Euro 3rd party funding for R&D in 2013, the
highest of any German university.
• RWTH employs a very applied approach to research, aiming to
improve production & systems at various companies.
• ProSense is one of the first Industrie 4.0 projects (included in logistics
cluster) funded by the Ministry of Research & Education. It aims to
develop regulation and control systems for complex production
networks based on cybernetic control loop behaviour and adaptive
design of logistics networks.
• FIMECC has established a factory (office) on the RWTH campus which
will allow FIMECC staff and companies to identify new research and
business opportunities with technology leaders.
The digitalization of all production objects will radically increase the information density
Due to massive development of mobile broadband connections companies will become more
networked and agile
IT solutions as an app will considerabyl increase usability and consumer acceptance
The radicalness of innovations will increase due to accelerated prototype-development
The Aachen Perspective – main enablers for Industrie 4.0
Source: Prof. Dr. Günther Schuh, RWTH Aachen University
it’s OWL” is an alliance of 174 businesses,
universities, research institutes and organizations
working together to make the innovative leap from
mechatronics to intelligent technical systems.
The joint development strategy was one of the
winners in the Leading-Edge Cluster Competition run
by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research
(BMBF) in January 2012. The competition is the
flagship of the German federal government’s High-
The Leading-Edge Cluster pools the resources of
global market leaders in mechanical engineering and
the electrical, electronics and automotive supply
industries, as well as internationally renowned,
cutting-edge research institutes.
The commercial and scientific members of the
technology network work together on 45 applied
research projects worth a total of around EUR 100
million. In this way, the partners will over the next
four years develop technologies for a new generation
of products and production systems.
It‘s OWL partners with the Finnish
innovation network HERMIA and with
Fimecc. It has a huge pool of partners
from business, research and
academia and has been awarded a
Gold Label for cluster management by
the European Cluster Excellence
Initiative. Source: www.ist-owl.com
Hardware & Software for Embedded Systems
„Embedded4You” was established in 2006 as an
informal (to date only German) network of innovative
SMEs in the area of hardware and software
development (middleware and application) for
embedded systems, and recognises the challenges of
Industrie 4.0 in the industry
The platform recognises the fragmented nature of the
embedded systems market (components, assembly parts,
SW), and propagates open systems which make users
less dependent on providers.
Embedded4You draws on a broad basis of SMEs
providing them with cooperation with similar companies
– and research organisations – to enable technology
transfer, exchange of know-how, best practice, joint-
development of customised solutions and centralised
organisation of participation in trade fair and events.
Funded projects to date with E4Y participation
included SPES2020 (development of methodology for
model-based development of embedded systems) and
ComVantage (see following slide.
Member include: Berger IT-COSMOS GmbH,
iSyst Intelligent Systeme GmbH, IMACS
GmbH, Kölsch & Altmann GmbH, RST
Industrie Automation GmbH, Protos
Software GmbH, University of Applied
Collaboration platform for mobile maintenance
„ComVantage” (Collaborative Manufacturing Network for
Competitive Advantage) is a product-centric collaboration
space for dynamic and flexible information exchange
between multiple companies including the end-customer,
particularly with regard to mobile maintenance. It was
established in the last few years with three objectives:
Secure Collaboration via a Dynamic and De-
centralised Access to Information
Easy to Handle and Trustful Collaboration Apps for
Collaboration Apps with Verified Added-Value
ComVantage has a consortium of international members
listed on the left.
The platform facilitates and helps to optimise the
following: collaboration between multiple companies (incl.
SMEs) and customer; focus on information exchange &
optimised access to machine data for maintenance
purposes; fast & agile re-configuration of production
processes; increasing operational excellence; optimising
product design and innovation.
The website lists a range of further collaboration projects
(present and past) which may contain valuable networking
information for Finnish companies.
Bosch Venture Forum
Smart Industry (Industrie 4.0)
The Robert Bosch Venture Forum 2014
offers innovative companies the opportunity
to win the Bosch Group as an investor,
partner or customer.
Project Background & goals
The Bosch Group is looking for partnerships with
companies focusing on the following technology areas:
• Smart Industry (Industrie 4.0) – Algorithms,
applications and solutions that promote cyber-physical
production systems and secure ind. automation.
• Autonomous Systems – enabling technologies for
components, systems and SW in fields of robotics,
vehicle technology systems and driving technology
• Wearable Electronics – Materials, devices and
applications worn close to body or on body for
measuring and analysing
Current partners in the control & automation field include, amongst
others, the following:
Opportunities to collaborate with the Bosch Group include
the following aspects:
• Minority equity investment by Robert Bosch Venture
• Partnering with the Bosch Group and its tier suppliers
• Development cooperation
• Building customer-supplier relationships
• Marketing & support for national / international roll-out
leader in ultra
USA Netherlands UK
for private &
mobile, embedded &
Active Research Environment for Next Generation of Automobiles
The research campus ARENA2036 PPP project
has a focus on R&D for lightweight materials.
It was set up in 2012 when the project won a
„Research Campus“ competition by the Federal
Ministry of Research & Education.
Another integral focus is car production in
future factories, where there are no conveyor
belts, and where robots and humans intuitively
work hand in hand.
The research (future) factory will combine
development work from two areas: „construction
& materials“, „simulation & digital prototypes“
A major project goal is to secure Germany as a
location for future car production.
ARENA2036 is based at Stuttgart University, has
partners shown on the left and has an investment
volume of 30m Euro.
Further networks and associations have also
already agreed to cooperate.
Smart Factory – European Project
SmartFactoryKL is a manufacturer-
independent demonstration and research
platform and is unique in Europe.
The aim is to introduce sophisticated IT
into factory automation.
Founded 2005 as non-profit association to
establish network of industrial and research
partners to develop base technologies and
Has been cooperating intensively with the
German Research Center for Artificial
Intelligence (DFKI) from the beginning.
At the Hannover Fair 2014 the DFKI-
SmartFactoryKL introduced an unique,
modular crossvendor production unit for the
first time (see left).
Other members include – Lund University,
Cisco, John Deere, Johnson Controls,
Siemens, Fraunhofer Institute, BASF
(amongst others) Source: www.dfki.de; www.smartfactory-kl.de
Smart Factory – Siemens
Siemens has opened an Electronic Works
smart factory in Amberg, Germany.
The 10,000m² high-tech factory has smart
machines that coordinate the production and
distribution of the company‘s simatic control
The whole system involves 1.6bn
components for over 50,000 annual
A total of 10,000 materials are sourced
from 250 suppliers to make the plant‘s 950
1,100 employees have to be intelligently
scheduled to meet the requirements of an
Gartner Industry Research only found 15
defects per million, 99% reliability and 100%
traceability in a study conducted in 2010.
The AGILITA project (agile production logistic and transport methods) aims to
develop a flexible and efficient material flow system for production purposes
Consortium Leader: Premium AEROTEC GmbH
Consortium members: E&K Automation GmbH, Institut für
Fertigungstechnik und Werkzeugmaschinen (IFW) an der
Leibniz Universität Hannover, MFP GmbH, Waldemar Winckel
GmbH & Co. KG.
One focus of the AGILITA development is the connecting of
production control systems with RFID technology in order to
enable automatic control and complete tracking of
components that need processing.
Also, the development of a concept for automated,
individually configurable transport units, to enable transport
and safety of high-quality components.
Automised monitoring of machinery is expensive for SMEs. The AutASS
project aims to develop a permanent „health check“ for machines and
Consortium Leader: Hanning Elektro-Werke GmbH & Co. KG
Consortium members: Fraunhofer Institut für Integrierte
Schaltungen, Hochschule Ostwestfalen-Lippe, Interroll
Trommelmotoren GmbH, RWTH Aachen, Universität
A main focus of the project is the integration of sensory
functions in electrical drive systems such as electric motors.
This creates intelligent and automatic diagnostic capabilities
for individual components from drive systems and processes,
and a mechatronic control circuit is established.
Construction machines cannot „speak“ and don‘t therefore know when the
next truck is due for loading. The AutoBauLog project attempts to link all
construction machines on a building site in an intelligent network, so that
they can in future understand, analyse and optimise their own situation in
relation to the task they are being asked to do.
Consortium Leader: RIB Information Technologies AG
Consortium members: Universität Hohenheim -
Forschungszentrum Innovation und Dienstleistung, Topcon
Deutschland GmbH, Drees & Sommer Infra Consult und
Entwicklungsmanagement GmbH, Ed. Züblin AG, Karlsruher
Institut für Technologie, Institut für Technologie und
Management im Baubetrieb und Fachgebiet Building
The main focus of the project is based around three
innovations: 1) Equipping of all construction machines on the
15 km construction site with software-based intelligence and
sensors; 2) Enabling machines to cooperate and form
„machine teams“; 3) Combining of machine-based
construction processes in one virtual reality and simulation-
supported control panel.
Industrie 4.0 from an SME perspective
Interview on 12.6.14 with Mr Gruber, consultant in the department for Industry, Innovation, Environment
and Transport at IHK Munich (chamber of trade and commerce)
The IHK in Munich started to first address the topic of Industrie 4.0 around 1 year ago.
Companies targeted by the IHK are mainly SMEs (which are automatically members of the chambers of
trade and commerce), although some larger companies are also occassionally involved.
So far there have been 2 events to which the SMEs were invited. Companies pay a small fee of around
50 Euro to participate.
Events also sometimes include the participation of local academic or research institutes, such as the
Munich Technical University.
The next event will take place on 16.7.14, where participants will visit the machine engineering
department at the university to see a demonstration smart plant that has been built to fill containers with
Mr Gruber confirmed that only few SMEs have even started thinking about Industrie 4.0 at all at this
Companies have other priorities, have very limited knowledge of the whole topic and also limited
resources (compared to BMW, for example, which has a department with around 30 persons for Industrie
The topic most commonly addressed by SMEs is IT security. Mr Gruber believes that until standards and
platforms have been defined, SMEs will only play a minor role.
Interview on 6.6.14 with Ms Jeromin, consultant in the department for Industry, Energy, Environment and
Technology at IHK Karlsruhe (chamber of trade and commerce)
Each IHK is autonomous and organises events on topics that they see fit for companies in their own
region. There is no official national IHK policy on Industrie 4.0 at the moment, nor is that expected soon.
An event was orgnised on 20.2.14 by IHK Karlsruhe called: „Industrie 4.0 – Automation trends also for
SMEs?“ This was an IHK initiative, and was not the initiative of local SMEs.
Ms Jeromin confirmed that political circles have great expectations of the whole Industrie 4.0 issue.
In practice, however, things look very different to the picture that is being portrayed by political circles,
research organisations and certain leading companies.
Even some large companies that IHK Karlsruhe speaks to have done little to nothing so far to find out
what implications the whole issue might have for them.
More active companies who have started to think in more depth about Industrie 4.0 are either doing so
as part of a research projects, or even going it alone.
However, in many companies the 3rd industrial revolution has not yet properly taken place in terms of
automation. Automation (not Industrie 4.0) remains the immediate priority for many companies.
Problems with RFID chips have been slowing down automation efforts for several companeis Ms
Jeromin has spoken to.
Another problem will be companies in the South-West who do a lot of hands-on work, with customized
heavy plant, machinery etc. Much of the value-add lies here with the manual work done, i.e. in the furniture,
wood or metalworking industry. This will be problematic to automise, let alone integrate into Industrie 4.
Heavy involvement in next 10 years by SMEs likely to be restricted by innovative, technological leaders
involved in complicated supply chains.
Services and further innovation stories in
Spare parts and maintenance services, traditionally
strong revenue drivers in the engineering products
industry, are declining.
A recent Roland Berger survey showed a clear
correlation between service revenue and EBIT margins
(where services accounted for 30%+ of revenues, EBIT
margins were 10%+).
Future potential exists in areas such as performance
increase (upgrades, updates, performance audits) and
consulting services (technical assessment, due diligence,
dimensioning, factory planning). Theser are currently a
small part of service portfolios, which have historically
Machines currently often only connected to wireless
sensing devices if problems expected.
80% of companies currently receive some data from
installed base, but usually acquired reactively, when
responding to specific problems.
Companies should look to industry leaders in data
monitoring, e.g. aviation, energy, oil & gas. OEMs can
also own data management intermediaries, as in the
case of Rolls Royce and OSyS.
Virtual Fort Knox
Flagship project of the Baden-Württemberg region in
the South West of Germany, sponsored by the regional
ministry of finance and economy.
Launched in 2013 and coordinated by Fraunhofer IPA
institute, the project also cooperates with HP, Schenk,
SimBean, Xetics amongst others.
The project is an interface between the IT systems of
companies (manufacturers) and their clients, and is a
service-oriented approach to leveraging data.
In the virtual Fort Knox project user data (data from
warehouses, tools, machines and plant, as well as from
CPS systems) is regarded as a treasure that needs the
The offering is regarded as interesting for SMEs
(machine & plant manufacturing), which so far only
have limited experience of digital tools to support
It also offers software providers a platform to offer
flexible, competitively priced and customised solutions
to manufacturing SMEs.
A secure, federative platform for
service-oriented applications in
machine and plant manufacturing
Visualisation of machine data via app
Internal company IT –
HW & SW + eLog
Shopfloor with machine tools that need
Industrie 4.0 is about the very future of German as one of the leading international manufacturing
powerhouses. This is why Industrie 4.0 lies at the heart of the government’s high-tech strategy. Whether
Industrie 4.0 is a revolution or a vision is still unclear. It is currently not reality, however, especially not at
The following IT application areas will all be crucial for the success of Industrie 4.0 and will represent
opportunities for Finnish companies:
Electrical actuators, sensor and embedded technology
Modularised production systems
Short-distance wireless data (RFID), long-distance (broadband)
Interface between production systems and control systems
A wide range of R&D projects, cooperations and clusters already exist, many profiting from PPP
programmes – Finland already has crucial networks to leading German clusters of excellence (Aachen and
Although several large companies and research institutes are particularly active, some programmes (e.g.
Autonomik) are aimed especially at SMEs. Chambers of trade & commerce are also starting to introduce
Despite high awareness (especially large companies), activities at grass roots level is low and likely to be
dominated by early adopters and those participating in research programmes or leveraging clusters.
Industrie 4.0 is a long-term vision, not necessarily conducive to short-term profit. Finland needs a strategic
approach based on competence centres, bundling of skills , clusters and participation in international
Traditional manufacturers will gradually migrate towards being data-based service providers and non-
manufacturing companies will emerge as new players. Finland‘s – with strong ITC heritage and
competence – is ideally placed to profit, but will a need a coordinated, professional, Industrie 4.0-focussed
approach as opposed to undifferentiated SME subsidy-programmes.
Germany already has a comprehensive legislative and political framework in place. This includes a wide
range of PPP programmes and projects, some of which are international. Networking and contributing to
these circles underlines technology leader mentality and can lead to business opportunities.
The role of FIMECC provides established Finnish companies with excellent access to leading-edge research
and collaboration projects, also in Germany, and should be further developed and leveraged to the full.
Participating in events such as the Hannover Fair and Automatica offer great opportunities to approach the
market jointly with German institutes and companies, in order to create networks and new business
SMEs will need time to get familiar with the needs of Industrie 4.0. Finland‘s company ecosystem offers an
opportunity to demonstrate leadership in this area – build up a strong base of SME case studies for all
types of industrial production companies.
Chambers of trade and commerce offer an potential funnel into this area, often have foreign trade
departments focussed primarily on doing foreign business and could be interesting cooperation partners
for SME-based Industrie 4.0 issues.
Programmes such as SME Robotics can be leveraged by Finnish research organisations (and ultimately
companies) involved in systems and software for robotics.
Trade Fairs, Events (1/2)
AUTOMATICA, Munich (21-24 June 2016). The leading trade fair and
platform for automation and production-process innovations. The trade
fair is held every two years and has the world’s largest range of robotics,
assembly lines and machine-vision systems.
The following examples of trade fairs/events for both large and small companies can act as
hubs for Industrie 4.0 networking and promotion work from a Finnish perspective:
HANNOVER Messe, Hannover (13-17 April 2015). The world's leading
show for industrial technology, showcasing new products across the
entire value chain and highlighting innovations in all core sectors .
Trade Fairs, Events (2/2)
Bayern Innovativ, Munich (9 July 2014). An organisation of platforms, networks
and clusters set up by the Bavarian Government in 1995 to promote innovation
and technology transfer. On 9 July 2014 the BAIKEM network (3.600 companies and
400 research institutes from 32 countries) is organising an event called „Embedded
Systems, solutions for Industrie 4.0“ in Munich. Focus is on hardware, middleware-
IHK München und Oberbayern, Munich (6 May 2014). The Chamber of Commerce
and industry for Munich and Upper Bavaria is one of 9 chambers in Bavaria and one
of more than 60 throughout Germany. The Munich chamber is responsible for
380.000 member companies, ranging from one-man setups through medium-sized
enterprises to global players. Bavarian industries currently make 53 percent of their
sales abroad, tendency rising. As part of their remit to support and advise (mainly)
SMEs, the IHK has started organising Industrie 4.0 events. At an event called “IT
secures production”, organised in May, academic and business speakers presented
on secure solutions options for SMEs in Industrie 4.0.