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Case 13.07.2020

Schaeffler launches a condition monitoring solution developed with its Finnish partner network

German automotive and industrial supplier Schaeffler has developed its new condition monitoring system OPTIME with the help of its Finnish partner network and is now launching the system commercially. Schaeffler has earlier established a research and development team in Finland. Business Finland’s Invest in Finland unit has supported Schaeffler in getting to know the Finnish operating environment and in creating its partner network.
For more information

Janne Kari
Head of Invest in Finland, ICT
Business Finland, Invest in Finland
+358 40 541 0580
janne.kari (at) businessfinland.fi

Schaeffler, one of the biggest family-owned companies in Germany, set up an IoT Solutions Center in Jyväskylä, Finland, in early 2019. About a quarter of Schaeffler’s 14 BEUR revenue is created by the Industrial Division which the Jyväskylä unit is a part of.

The Schaeffler team in Jyväskylä has developed the new condition monitoring system which is designed for industrial uses, collecting various data from engines or machines. For example, the wear of machine parts can be anticipated by monitoring and analyzing the data, so that maintenance operations are carried out in a controlled manner.
 
“We founded the Industrial IoT Solution Center in Finland and found suitable partners for the development of the various aspects of the system. The excellent ecosystem of Finnish partners has enabled a fast development schedule for the system. We have also recruited very competent employees to our team, and are very satisfied with our Jyväskylä IoT Solution Center,” says Rauli Hantikainen, Senior Vice President Industry 4.0, Schaeffler. “We came to Finland because of the availability of the required product development know-how, suitable and easy to work with partner network, leading edge IoT technology and active customer network. We bring significant international growth for the partner network in terms of employment and turnover.”

Effective collaboration with partners

Schaeffler has developed its system in collaboration with several Finnish partners which have collaborated effectively to take the project forward and keep the tough project timeline. Business Finland has played a facilitating role in the creation of Schaeffler’s partner ecosystem.

“Finland’s IoT ecosystem has demonstrated its capability and quality of cooperation in developing Schaeffler’s OPTIME system. This is a great reference for Finnish Industrial IoT know-how. Finland has the best-functioning Industrial IoT ecosystem in the world, and this has impressed Schaeffler,” says Janne Kari, Head of Industry, ICT and Digitalization, Business Finland, who has been closely involved in the case.

More high-productivity jobs and a great reference case

Schaeffler’s operations benefit Finland on many levels. Currently, the company employs about 20 people in Jyväskylä, and creates many more jobs in the partner network. Its Finnish partners also get access to a significant export channel and export earnings.

“Schaeffler has long had a sales company in Finland that has, for example, sold bearings to  Finnish industries. The new IoT Solution Center unit is a highly-appreciated addition in Finland. Schaeffler is a very reputable company in Europe, in the automotive as well as industrial sectors. This has significant benefits for Finland’s reputation and ICT industry brand image. We are working to attract similar foreign direct investments which will help Finland to recover from the recession,” Kari explains.

Finnish know-how helps Schaeffler to differentiate

According to Teppo Hemiä, CEO of Wirepas, one of the Finnish companies in the partner network, Schaeffler has set a high level of ambition for its product and service business in Finland from the beginning.

“It was clear that the system had to meet their tough business requirements for wireless data transmission. These include low power consumption, scalability, and industrial-grade reliability,” says Hemiä. “Partnering with Wirepas and other Finnish partners that are experienced in working together has helped Schaeffler to focus on the product offering with which it differentiates in the market. This is an excellent reference for Wirepas and the Finnish IoT ecosystem as a whole.”

The partner companies:

•       Wapice (Data collection, Mobile Application)
•       Wirepas (Mesh radio technology)
•       Treon (Network gateway)
•       Etteplan (Testing, RCA)
•       Nixu (Security)
•       Gofore (Customer interviews, UI design)
•       Link Design (Usability)
•       Salcomp (Sensors)