By Safwat Hakam, Country Sales Director Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt, Rockwell Automation
Amid a challenging global economic environment, Egypt stands as a notable outlier. According to the World Bank, the Egyptian economy grew by 5.6% last year – more than double the global average. For many readers this may appear surprising – after all, for much of the last decade the outside impression of Egypt has been one of political and economic turmoil. This situation, I’m glad to say, has changed significantly as the country has revived its fortunes and once again promises to be a powerful industrial force.
While the full impact of COVID-19 is yet to be built into future global projections, Egypt now has a strong foundation to continue its growth trajectory. In recent years, the country has experienced economic expansion through improvements in the business environment and infrastructure spend across essential areas such as energy, water and transportation. This has been a magnet for global companies in key industries including oil & gas, mining, automotive and consumer goods that see the country’s growth potential.
The scene is now set for Egypt to become one of the great success stories of the coming decade and a desirable place to do business. For this potential to be fully realised, however, embracing digitalisation is absolutely vital.
Unlocking the Power of Digitalisation
For companies operating in Egypt, from multinational corporations to home-grown businesses, digitalisation is more than simply increasing investment in technology; it’s about assembling an environment that offers huge increases in efficiency, productivity and resilience.
In the current global climate, businesses have had their eyes opened to the need for digitalised environments with remote capabilities in order to deal with the challenges of enforced quarantine, social distancing and travel restrictions. While many manufacturers had technologies such as IoT and AR on their forward roadmap, the situation has accelerated the pressing demand to install collaborative solutions, such as Vuforia Chalk.
As Egypt’s manufacturers plan for the next phase of their development, there are three core components of a digitalised production environment that are integral to the process of reaching full implementation.
1. Establish a Connected Environment
Digitalisation involves upgrading sites, services and plants from old systems to new technologies that enable those plants to be connected. This transformation runs deeper simply adding new digital tools to the production environment – it transforms the entire DNA of the plant. For the manufacturer, this brings an enormous improvement to operations in areas such as facility management, production flow monitoring, plant safety, quality control and logistics.
Increasingly, Egyptian businesses are opening their eyes to the potential that transformation offers. Even amid restricting circumstances, Rockwell Automation and KMT have been working with businesses operating in Egypt to upgrade solutions from old legacy automation systems into new state of the art automation systems that enable them to operate a connected environment.
2. Secure the Environment
While digitalisation creates immense possibilities, it’s important not to overlook the associated risks. Introducing internet connectivity into an industrial environment creates new vectors for security threats, such as the risks of malware and data breaches, which make having strong cybersecurity measures in place vitally important.
We have created a team in the Middle East that provides a unique and distinguished solution around cybersecurity. We can survey any plant, we can improve the infrastructure for the local network, we can protect it, we can make sure that we create a safe environment, and we can install the latest and most advanced software to secure the environment.
Combining our experience in this ever-changing field, we deliver a total end-to-end solution that connects the IT world to the OT world without bringing all the threats of the IT world into the OT world.
3. Enable Access to Data, Anywhere and Anytime
The real value of a digitalised environment is to capitalise on the vast amount of data connected environments produce, and to use that data to inform better decision-making. To that end, it’s important that businesses are able to access plant data all the time in order to improve the availability of the machines, improve productivity, efficiency and tracking of shipments and products, and improve the inventory systems to better manage resources.
We work closely with PTC in order to offer our customers access to the best applications in the market at the moment, including the Thingworx IoT platform. Thingworx allows us to respond to the needs of our customers across areas such as efficiency, predictive maintenance, inventory status and real-time tracking of the production and the material.
The Secret Weapon
Embracing these three components will help lead your business towards realising the power of digitalisation. There is, however, a secret weapon that creates an additional edge in the digital economy: teamwork.
Rockwell Automation has built a strong reputation in the Middle East & Africa for its ability to understand customer needs and provide industry-leading solutions. KMT possesses a matchless level of local knowledge and reach. Together, we can provide your business with the solutions and experience you need to unlock your digital potential.
We deliver the whole digital solution as a connected and secure platform in order to transform your operations across everything you do. Building on this platform, we can help you install hardware and applications to help you to improve all areas of your operations across areas such as production, tracking of materials and predictive maintenance.
Through teamwork, we can help you to guarantee a return on investment. To do this we form a deep understanding of your business, your pain points and bottleneck and what’s really going to move your business forward over what promises to be a transformational era for the Egyptian economy.