IAA interviewed Andrew Zeon, analytics & IoT Solutions director, Software AG (Asia Pacific & Japan) on his company’s use of IoT.
IAA: Tell me more about your company?
Andrew Zeon (AZ): Software AG, we are an independent software and a platforms provider. Our value proposition is really about helping organisations become a truly digital enterprise so connecting people, products, the process, architecture, all their equipments. All of the things that make them who they are. At Software AG we are focused on helping them drive that transformation and being an innovation leader and ultimately being able provide a better service to the customer, better products, and adopting new business models. It is all about that digital enterprise and allowing our customers to become truly digital enterprises.
IAA: Do companies come to you who want to implement an IoT solution?
AZ: IoT is very broad and it is a whole ecosystem that has to come together. As I said, we can manage parts of that, the people, the processes, but when it comes to the other facets like device management, for example, we rely on our alliances and our partnership with other vendors and other niche provider. We work really as a team across alliances and partners to bring together an end-to-end holistic solution.
IAA: A lot of companies are weary of adopting IoT. Do you have to spend a lot of time encouraging potential customers to adopt IoT?
AZ: We call it the business value engineering group, and that is about working with the customer to ensure that whatever investment, and whatever IT is adopted it is going to bring about some business benefit, whether that be revenue or cost cutting, or efficiency, or productivity. It is all about making sure that there is business value. We have this whole methodology and concept behind it which we have got a select few people in, based both in Singapore and other parts of Asia, for helping to do that kind of analysis.
IAA: What is the most interesting solution you have seen in IoT?
AZ: I was in Malaysia the last couple of days and one of the airlines there talked about putting IoT devices and sensors on their planes to provide weather information. They wanted to use that as a mechanism to sell it back to the weather bureau. I thought that was a very interesting concept. I believe these days that weather bureaus will send a weather balloon up and apparently it bursts and it falls back down to the ground. There is a lot of costs associated with that. Then you have planes flying all over the world and over this country and constantly being up in the air so one of the innovative ideas that they came up with was to put sensors on their planes to pick up all that information, and then to monetise that. I thought that was very interesting.
IAA: What industry will IoT have the biggest impact in?
AZ: Definetly manufacturing, and that is why we are seeing a lot of activity in Asia, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, South Korea, for example, as well. We are seeing a lot of interest and a lot of growth in the manufacturing and production related organisations. Utilities is another one, where things like smart metering and even things like energy theft, they are trying to manage that through IoT related technologies. Logistics as well, we are seeing smart logistics, logistics providers trying to make their racks more efficient to be more fuel efficient, to be on time, and really leveraging IoT technologies to really drive that forward. They are probably the three main industries we are seeing a lot of growth.
IAA: What is your strategy for growing in this region?
AZ: Our strategy is to really form good alliances and partnerships with system integrators and consultancy groups who really understand the customer’s business, who are entrenched and who are constantly walking the floors and the corridors understanding the pain points and requirements. So forging alliances and partnerships with them and then augmenting their bigger programs of work with our technologies and our solutions.
IAA: What was your presentation about at IoT Asia?
AZ: I have been invited to IoT Asia and I was amazed at the breadth and the amount of people and the amount of sponsors and vendors who are coming here to showcase their technologies. My speech is going to be focused on how you can take the initial steps and what are some of the low barrier entry points into defining the IoT strategy for an industrial organisation now. So what are some of the things you can do now in order to define the future of IoT now. That is the theme of what I will be talking about.
IAA: What do you think about IoT Asia?
AZ: Today is my first day. Looking at the agenda, looking at the speakers, looking at the topics, I was very impressed at the depth and breadth that the conference is covering. There is a lot of things there that I think a lot of people will see a really great learning curve for them because IoT is going to be a game changer, it is going to cause a paradigm shift. They are asking how relevant is it for my organisation, I think a lot of those questions will be answered throughout this conference.