Exhibition Centre, Liverpool, UK, 13/14th November 2019
A fascinating two days at Smart Factory Expo in Liverpool this week, part of Digital Manufacturing Week. Great to explore the very latest in AI, VR, IoT, and many other digital technologies, and to see how they are transforming the world of Manufacturing. Many thanks to James Smith, the Event Director, for such an entertaining and informative event. Already looking forward to next year.
My own presentation was on Day 2 in the Smart Solutions Theatre, as part of the Smart Factory Conference agenda. I spoke about 'Building a Manufacturing Business in China'; To deliver the forecast growth potential of many industries, manufacturing companies need to look East, to where the big growth is happening. This is particularly relevant, as several European markets are forecast to lose some market share to the growing Asian regions in the coming years. China’s 14 trillion USD economy is still growing at 6% and is forecast to surpass the US by 2030 to become the world’s largest economy. Growth is fuelled by increasing demand across many sectors, both domestically and across the Asian region, especially for consumer electronics and advanced medical technologies. But many Western businesses struggle to know where to start or how to approach China, or are trying to build presence in the market but struggling to succeed. Using real world examples from the many factory projects, joint venture negotiations and numerous business start-ups that I was involved with in China, my presentation highlighted the many challenges that Western businessmen experience in trying to take their Western style of doing business to China and explained how to deal with them. Political involvement, a different approach to drawing up legal contracts, and Chinese style negotiation techniques are just some of the situations I covered.
Amazing to experience how the latest in Augmented Reality systems can assist engineers in remote locations, and to hear how generative design is taking engineering designs in new directions. Great also to catch up with Prof Mike Maddock and hear his views on the 4th Industrial Revolution.