Heidelberg expands communication infrastructure to meet future digital requirements

Dirk Kaliebe.
Dirk Kaliebe.

By creating a communication infrastructure geared to digital business models, the German press manufacturer is making further progress in its development from simply selling equipment to becoming “a customer-based service company.” The digitization strategy the company initiated is associated with completely new IT requirements for successful implementation of new Industry 4.0 applications and services. Heidelberg has therefore joined forces with IT service provider Dimension Data and other companies in the NTT Group, to create a scaleable and flexible IT infrastructure focusing on LAN, WAN, and communication services for some 110 sites and branches in almost 40 different countries around the world. “We see ourselves as a true partner for our customers in a digital future. With a state-of-the-art IT infrastructure, we’re laying the foundation for gearing our product and service portfolio to digital business models, while also providing them faster and more reliably,” says Heidelberg CFO Dirk Kaliebe, who is also responsible for IT.

heidelbergdigitization1-inHeidelberg showcased solutions for the challenges associated with Print Media Industry 4.0 at this year’s drupa tradeshow. Above all, the company “makes it as easy as possible to work with increasingly complex processes and technologies. At the same time, Heidelberg is continuously expanding its service portfolio so as to further improve machine availability and maximize customer productivity.” The OEM has access to a network of over 10,000 presses connected to the Heidelberg service center. The data provided by this Internet of Things is processed using cutting-edge big-data analysis, which enables potential failures to be predicted and performance trends to be analyzed. The company is looking to achieve further growth in this market segment.

Dimension Data selected as global partner

In this context, IT and IT infrastructure are vitally important for the success of Industry 4.0 as a fundamental technology. The actual data is crucial, because information about a product is just as important as the product itself. Only with the relevant data, can a product undergo further processing or be put to further use. Peter Busch, Director Enterprise Services at Dimension Data in Germany, who is responsible for outsourcing projects, added: “Our aim with Heidelberg is to significantly improve the company’s innovative strength, especially with regard to customer communication. We’re using reliable, highly integrated collaboration solutions combined with new, dynamic LAN infrastructures and corresponding WAN services for this purpose. Together with sister companies in our NTT Group – such as NTT Communications – we can offer wide-ranging know-how from a single source.”

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Tony Curcio is the editor of Graphic Arts Magazine.