Hitachi opens IoT centre in EEC estate

Hitachi opens IoT centre in EEC estate

Goal to facilitate Thailand 4.0 scheme

Mr Higashihara (fifth from left) says Thailand has a lot of traditional plants that can transform to smart factories.
Mr Higashihara (fifth from left) says Thailand has a lot of traditional plants that can transform to smart factories.

Hitachi Ltd, the Japan-based technology solutions provider, has opened its Lumada Center Southeast Asia in Thailand to become a test bed for Internet of Things (IoT) technology and capitalise on the country's planned digital transformation and the upcoming Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).

The Lumada Center opened on Sept 17 at Amata City Industrial Estate in Chon Buri with an investment of over 50 million baht in the first phase.

"Thailand is a strategic market in Southeast Asia and the country has a lot of traditional factories that can transform to smart factories, which is part of the government's Thailand 4.0 scheme," said Toshiaki Higashihara, president and chief executive of Hitachi Co.

Lumada is Hitachi's IoT platform that has been applied and proven in the Japanese, Chinese and US markets.

Hitachi will bring its IoT expertise to offer consulting, integration and provide complete solutions and use cases to deploy IoT alongside artificial intelligence (AI), big data analytics, and robotics for optimisation and automation, he said.

In the first phase, Hitachi will optimise smart factories by improving production processes, reducing lead time for inventory, increasing productivity and running preventive maintenance.

The second phase is meant to help expand the ability to connect factories in Thailand and improve smart logistics.

By 2021, Hitachi wants to expand services by connecting overseas factories in Asia to serve multinational firms that have various production bases in Southeast Asia, said Mr Higashihara.

The third phase aims to enable the public and government to use more valuable data, which is captured through sensors and IoT in smart cities. Examples of uses include smart security, simulation for railway investment planning, smart energy and smart healthcare.

Hitachi was selected as a smart city consultant for TCC Assets and Fraser Property for the ONE Bangkok project, integrating district and global landmark destinations.

He said Hitachi Asia (Thailand), one of its subsidiaries, signed a memorandum of understanding with SCG Cement-Building Material Co to promote energy-saving across factories that leverage the abilities of Lumada Center.

Mr Higashihara said the company expects by fiscal 2021, its Thai revenue will reach ¥300 billion (87.1 billion baht), up from ¥200 billion and ¥220 billion in fiscal 2017 and 2018, respectively.

By 2021, Hitachi's revenue in Asean is projected to reach ¥700 billion (203 billion baht), growing from ¥500 billion recorded in 2017.

The Lumada IoT platform is projected to contribute 10% of Hitachi's Thailand revenue.

Hitachi is also considering bidding for the high-speed train operations in the EEC.

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