Industry 4.0 will bring along smart factories and a big challenge for industrial companies

Factory machines are communicating with each other and with the employees, they can operate on their own and the orders are automatically prepared for customers. This will be a reality in the next four years for majority of industrial companies thanks to the upcoming fourth industrial revolution, known as Industry 4.0. As Bernard Marr explains, it is a production digitization, when ordinary plants change into so called smart factories, which monitor all physical processes happening in the factory. Therefore, the factory is self-controlled, with a help of various sensors, cameras and readers. Industry 4.0 will ease many activities for industrial companies, on the other hand this technological change also represents a big challenge. This challenge can be overcome without difficulties by using innovative startups.

Statistics and Industry 4.0

As it is said by PwC a Strategy&, the arrival of the fourth industrial revolution is going to be huge, at least from the financial point of view. For example, Germany, a pioneer of Industry 4.0, plans to invest € 40 trillion into the industry transformation every year, up until 2020. The value of annual overall European investments in the next four years is estimated at € 140 trillion. Are such investments even worth it? According to 235 German businesses, which participated in PWS and Strategy&, they definitely are. The businesses predict that thanks to Industry 4.0 their productivity will increase by 18% in a four year time. However, Industry 4.0 is still more of a concept than reality at the moment.  In Germany, there is so far only 20% of industrial companies, which have already digitized their key business processes; although it is estimated that this ratio will grow up to 85% by 2020.

Business opportunities

As Roland Berger points out, innovative startups will prosper from the accession of Industry 4.0, for instance by proposing the best procedures for the implementation of Industry 4.0, technological concepts, development of technological roadmaps etc. Startups can also help the companies with faster implementation of Industry 4.0. According to Marr, the speed of businesses' reaction and how fast they will decide to go towards the fourth industrial revolution, is going to be important. Marr also says that businesses, which are afraid of change and do not want to risk, are not very likely to succeed in the future. 

Startups that went for it

An integral part of Industry 4.0 is digitization of movement. Sewio enables to track the movement also inside buildings, thanks to wireless technology. It is not in vain that they have been financed by one of this year's JIC STARCUBE partners, Y Soft. The group of startups, focusing on Industry 4.0, include for example the Czech company BurgSys. This startup reduces their clients' costs by using a unique software, which can automate certain routine activities and, in combination with data analysis, predict future events. Another company focusing on Industry 4.0 is for instance Cybus from Germany. This company helps converting machines in industrial businesses to so called Internet of Things, so, thanks to the maximum control over company data, it increases their income, saves time and reduces costs. Another startup worth mentioning is Canadian Worximity Technologies, which enables the managers to access the production anytime and anywhere via cell phone or tablet application.

Video: Fourth Industrial Revolution in Germany

Industry 4.0 is one of this year's JIC STARCUBE topics. JIC STARCUBE is the oldest Czech accelerator. Startups can sign up for this accelerator until 7 August 2016. Since 2010, there have been 72 startups, which joined the JIC STARCUBE. The startup teams participate in three months full of knowledge, workshops, meeting with mentors and networking with global technological companies. They acquire advantages and financial support for testing and prototyping, legal or tax services, marketing and covering their travel and accommodation expenses. Some of the successful companies, which once were a part of this accelerator, are for example GINAReservio or one of the fastest growing startups, Kiwi (former Skypicker). You can find more information about the accelerator at our webpage.