If there were a northern record for most attended webinars, it would surely now be held by the new Smart Industry Hub. As many as 250 people followed the opening last Friday, which was broadcast via live stream from JB Besturingstechniek in Oosterwolde.
This makes the kick-off of Smart Industry North more than successful. The initiators wanted - even in these corona times when everything goes online - to create as much attention as possible for the Digitalization Delta Plan that will be implemented with and for industrial SMEs. The Netherlands will have five hubs to accelerate Smart Industry and Digitalization. The northern hub is one of them. Some of the services will be provided centrally. For example, the session was produced by a video company - incidentally, with software from the Groningen company EventInsight.
Short but powerful
The kick-off was short but powerful. Within an hour, the audience was informed about the how and why, as well as what entrepreneurs can expect from the Smart Industry Hub. That started, of course, with a chat between chairman Mark Beumer with host Jan Bos, who, together with his wife, runs JB Besturingstechniek in Oosterwolde, Friesland. Jan previously participated in Region of Smart Factories (RoSF), the precursor to the Smart Industry Hub. Jan said he was pleased that we are now going to make the knowledge of RoSF more widely available to the entire northern industry.
From The Hague, Focco Vijselaar, DG Business and Innovation of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate provided the official kickoff. Vijselaar explained that the National Smart Industry policy is now "going into the region," and that the hubs will play an important role in it. He was impressed by the comprehensive and professional approach in which the Northern Netherlands is going to do this and wished the Hub much success. He also promised to come to the North in the near future to meet in person with the partners behind the Hub.
The great importance
The great importance of Smart Industry and Digitalization was illustrated during the kick-off by three videos of northern companies already active with Industry 4.0. These were ZuiZ, Betech and Cosun Beet Company. This also brought into focus that the Smart Industry Hub is set up for:
- Small and larger manufacturing companies,
- Companies already far along in digitization
- Companies that are still at the beginning
- Companies in the process and manufacturing industries.
The videos were commented on by a number of partners behind the SIH (the Drachten Innovation Cluster, IBDO and NPAL).
The kick-off was of course a formal moment. In that context Marjan Bos of SNN handed the famous subsidy check to Dina Boonstra of the NOM. NOM is the SIH's spokesperson.
Setup SIH program
Once the building blocks had been reviewed, through the videos and the talks, Hans Praat was able to explain the design of the SIH program. Hans Praat coordinated the creation of the Hub. He explained that the SIH is actually a Digitalization Delta Plan aimed at industrial SMEs - consisting of three action lines:
- Action Line 1 (Go Digital) educates companies about Smart Industry.
- In action line 2 (Make your factory a Smart Factory), companies are supported to make a plan for their own Smart Factory
- In Action Line 3 ("Play the Champions League"), frontrunners are in tow to join the European Smart Industry program in Brussels.
- Action Line 4 will strengthen the ecosystem so that all companies will soon benefit from a strong Smart Industry region.
Partners Smart Industry Hub North
Through the Smart Industry Hub Noord, the partners are jointly putting their shoulders to the wheel in the ambition to accelerate Smart Industry among northern manufacturing companies, each from their own role and constituency. Their mission was well articulated with the SIH animation: "Northern Netherlands as the cradle for smart factories and smart products, we like that. "The partners are:
- The Royal Metal Union
- Fieldlabs 5GGroningen, Region of Smart Factories, Technologies Added and the Drachten Innovation Cluster
- NOM (sponsor)
- From the knowledge and educational institutions: the University of Groningen (RUG), NHL Stenden Hogeschool and Hanze Hogeschool. The MBO will also be connected soon.
Smart Industry Hub North presentation
View the presentation on the Smart Industry Hub