Co-creating value in Industrial Internet ecosystem

Mar 19, 2018

The amount of data is multiplying every day. The challenge is to know which data is relevant and how it informs decision making. To get the most out of data for its customers, Valmet is building an Industrial Internet partner ecosystem. The ecosystem brings leading industry players together to co-create new value adding applications and services for pulp, paper and board, tissue and energy customers.

Valmet's ecosystem of industrial internet partners

“We are building a solution ecosystem to complement our Industrial Internet offering, and to co-create services that help our customers in moving their performance forward. By bringing the leading industry players together we can utilize data in a new way to discover hidden improvement potential. Our work with the Industrial Internet ecosystem has started well, and I believe we are on the right path,” says Jari Almi, Director, Industrial Internet at Valmet.

The first published pulp and paper ecosystem partners are Tieto, a provider of manufacturing execution and enterprise resource planning systems, and Kemira, a global chemistry company. For the energy customers, Valmet has partnered with Swedish Energy Opticon to offer an online Energy Management Solution.

Added value through combining process and business data

The ecosystem partnerships are developed to create added value for customers by combining process and business data from different mill and plant systems and using the data to reduce raw material and energy costs, improve end quality, reduce downtime and optimize maintenance.

Today, production process data from the automation system is mainly utilized for real-time process control according to set targets. On mill or plant level, there are also other important sources of data. Enterprise Resource Planning, Manufacturing Execution and Maintenance Systems provide data that is utilized from business perspective. On a company level, the data can be utilized for business planning and fleet management. Combining data from these systems creates new opportunities.

“The cooperation with our ecosystem partners increases the amount of data we can utilize for our customers’ benefit. This means we can offer completely new, valuable solutions. The more data we have, and the greater the amount of skills we can use in interpreting it, the better we are able to help our customers in challenging situations. The benefits are numerous. With the ­co-created solutions, our customers can optimize their energy and material use, plan maintenance activities, increase productivity and cut costs, amongst other benefits,” says Juha-Pekka ­Helminen, Director, Digital Ecosystem at Valmet.

Currently, several pilot projects with Industrial Internet ecosystem partners are starting or ongoing. In the pilots, Valmet and its partners are testing how to combine process data with mill and company level data, and how the data is used to enhance customer performance, for example in the papermaking process.

Word class data security solutions

To move business performance forward, data needs to be shared. Protecting customer data has been one of the main design principles for Valmet in developing its Industrial Internet applications and services.

“We understand that there can be doubts about sharing data. We have put special focus on data security, and we have processes in place for safe and protected way of saving and sharing data. For example, we never share customer data with our ecosystem partners without prior customer consent. We use the world’s leading service providers such as Amazon Web Services, because we take data security concerns very seriously,” explains Helminen.