Juan Pedro Moreno, Rosa García, Ana Patricia Botín, Luis de Guindos, Elzbieta Bienkowska, José María Álvarez-Pallete, Begoña Cristeto y Fernado Abril-Martorell
The I Connected Industry 4.0 Congress, held yesterday in Madrid and organized by the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness, brought together a large number of companies, including Telefónica, Banco Santander, Siemens, Indra and Accenture, to share experiences and baseline trends to enable Spanish companies to position themselves at the forefront of this new industrial revolution.
Luis de Guindos, Minister of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness, opened the Congress and encouraged companies to continue to lend support to their transformation: “It is very important to have a strong industrial sector. The use of the new technologies for digitization will lead to an increase of 100,000 million euros in the GDP in 2025.” Elzbieta Bienkowska, European Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, spoke after the Minister, stressing that “the administrations cannot work alone, they must form partnerships with companies to promote digitization in Europe.” She also commented on all the opportunities set to open up in this new phase and the need to incorporate SMEs so that they can enjoy all the benefits.
“Industry 4.0 is not an option but a necessity”
Following the introduction, José María Álvarez-Pallete, Chairman & CEO of Telefónica; Ana Botín, Chairman of the Santander Group; Fernando Abril-Martorell, Chairman of Indra; Rosa García, CEO of Siemens España and Juan Pedro Moreno, President of Accenture Iberia, took part in a panel session and discussed their companies’ commitment to connected industry. Ana Patricia Botín began by stating that “we need to be European champions in the digital world and a more streamlined regulatory system should be created in which all companies have the same opportunities in this globalized market.” As for José María Álvarez-Pallete, he emphasized that “the technological revolution is four times greater in size than the industrial revolution” and that “industry 4.0 is not an option but a necessity.”
With regard to the skills required by workers to cope with this digital revolution, Fernando Abril Martorell pointed out that we have a shortage of digital talent and that there is a gap between the existing needs and capacities, while Juan Pedro Moreno said that Spain is full of enthusiasm, innovation and talent. According to José María Álvarez-Pallete, “we have to train talent not only in technical capacities. Digital lawyers, digital philosophers etc.. will be essential. Social studies will be key.” Additionally, the Chairman of Banco Santander highlighted the need for technical, creative and value-driven profiles.
“This is not an era change, it is a change of era”
The CEO of Siemens España indicated that, thanks to the industrial revolution, “companies will be able to launch products 50% faster and make huge savings in terms of efficiency” and Telefónica’s Chairman & CEO underlined that the digital revolution will change everything. Not adapting is not an option, as this is not an era change; it is a change of era. This is why Telefónica is applying what we share with our customers. We are an agile, infinite, magnetic and personal company. “We are a company of platforms” declared the executive.
Following the panel discussion, Khalil Rouhana, Deputy Director-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology of the European Commission, gave a talk on the digital initiatives of industry in Europe. “We have to make sure that the benefits of the digital transformation reach everyone. The European Union supports projects like that of Connected Industry in Spain; they are essential for boosting the digitization of companies and society" declared Mr Rouhana.
During the Congress there were several speeches which addressed the future of production, industry and the digital transformation, as well as several thematic rooms, including the session titled Connected industry 4.0 and data, chaired by José Luis Gilpérez, Director of General Administration of the State, Defence, Security and Big Data at Telefónica España. "Information and Big Data will be at the center of this digital revolution" stated Telefónica's executive.
To end the Congress, Olivier Scalabre, Senior Partner and Managing Director of the Boston Consulting Group, spoke about the economic implications of Industry 4.0 and the Government’s role.