Schneider Electric targets Shanghai firms in AI push

Posted by Schneider Electric on December 5th, 2017

The China arm of Schneider Electric, the Rueil-Malmaison, France-headquartered company, is seeking to collaborate with various businesses in Shanghai to integrate the internet of things, or IoT, into traditional industries.[Special Coverage]

John Tuccillo, senior vice-president, industry and government affairs at Schneider Electric, believes the IoT can be used in different industries as part of digitalization of manufacturing.

The IoT can be described as a network of devices, vehicles, buildings and other objects that contain software or sensors that allow them to connect and exchange data.

"The application of the IoT will push not only the manufacturing industry ahead but other related fields, such as sewage disposal, healthcare, transportation and energy," said Tuccillo.

"Making different systems function together is what makes the IoT different to the internet of consumption. The IoT not only makes manufacturing more automatic but connects different systems."

EcoStruxure has been already adopted by China Baosteel Group, one of China's largest steel producers by output. It helps Baosteel to increase safety of operators and non-operators in the workshop and improve productivity. Daily output will likely increase 15 to 30 percent to reach up to 10,500 tons.

Schneider Electric now earns 45 percent of its revenue through the IoT.

The platform combines operational technology and information technology into one management interface. Users can easily access the system to practise various complex operations.

The whole procedure is as simple as tapping smartphone apps. "It's like an industrialized Android system," said Ma Yue, senior vice-president, industry business, Schneider Electric China, the company's local arm.

The system also creates a centralized multi-user collaboration platform, which allows itself to maintain configuration, administration and deployment locally or remotely.

Combined with its sustainable design, the system can make a company a consumer of its own byproducts.

The company currently has more than 700 researchers in China. The average time they take to bring a new product to market is 18 to 24 months.

The company's China operation employs 26,000 staff across 26 factories, eight logistics centers, three research and development offices, five branches and 40 regional offices.

China is also the second-largest market for Schneider Electric and the largest market of industrial automation, ahead of the US.

"We've set a long-term goal to sell one-fourth of our products in the Chinese market and the rest to global markets. China's Belt and Road Initiative is encouraging us to deploy more resources in China and other related markets," said Ma.

Schneider Electric's technology prowess flows from its investment (5 percent of its revenue) in R&D. For that, it has established five regional research centers worldwide: in France, the United States, China, India and Mexico, respectively.

"China's growing demand for high-value products, especially automobiles, and home-related services, offers many growth points," said Sun Fuquan, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Science and Technology for Development in Beijing.

Chen Bin, executive vice-president of the China Machinery Industry Federation, said China is making progress on the path to becoming an advanced and competitive economy, but it will take time for the required changes to have an impact on industry.

Patience and consistency will be required, as well as continuous reforms along the way, he said.

About Schneider Electric

Schneider Electric is the global specialist in energy management and automation. With revenues of ~€25 billion in FY2016, our 144,000 employees serve customers in over 100 countries, helping them to manage their energy and process in ways that are safe, reliable, efficient and sustainable. From the simplest of switches to complex operational systems, our technology, software and services improve the way our customers manage and automate their operations. Our connected technologies reshape industries, transform cities and enrich lives. At Schneider Electric, we call this *Life Is On*. Schneider Electric is the worldwide expert in energy administration and automation. With incomes of ~€25 billion in FY2016, our 144,000 representatives serve clients in more than 100 nations, Schneider Electric helping them to deal with their energy and process in ways that are protected, dependable, productive and practical. From the least difficult of changes to complex operational frameworks, Schneider Electric innovation, programming and administrations enhance the way our clients oversee and computerize their operations. Schneider Electric associated advancements reshape businesses, change urban communities and advance lives. At Schneider Electric, we call this Life Is On. Schneider Electric is leading the Digital Transformation of Energy Management and Automation in Homes, Buildings, Data Centers, Infrastructure and Industries. With global presence in over 100 countries, Schneider is the undisputable leader in Power Management – Medium Voltage, Low Voltage and Secure Power, and in Automation Systems. We provide integrated efficiency solutions, combining energy, automation and software. In our global Ecosystem, we collaborate with the largest Partner, Integrator and Developer Community on our Open Platform to deliver real-time control and operational efficiency. We believe that great people and partners make Schneider a great company and that our commitment to Innovation, Diversity and Sustainability ensures that Life Is On everywhere, for everyone and at every moment.

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