September 15, 2021
#Technology #Startup #Healthcare

Plugin Alliance, a first-of-its kind industry-technology alliance in India launches to accelerate Industry 4.0

For India to become a $5 trillion economy by 2025, it must invest in powerful, disruptive technological innovations that can catalyse long-term growth and make life smarter, efficient, convenient, and affordable at scale for the larger population as well as for businesses, large and small.

In an effort to cement India as a global manufacturing hub, the need of the hour, therefore, is to create a high-impact alliance of enterprises, academia, solution providers, MSMEs, and startups to enable the rapid adoption of Industry 4.0 technology innovations powered by AI, IoT, computer vision, and robotics.

To this end, Intel India, in collaboration with the Society for Innovation & Entrepreneurship (SINE)-IIT Bombay has founded India’s first industry-technology alliance, Plugin Alliance, to build an unparalleled value proposition across key verticals and themes.

Plugin Alliance aims to advance and scale emerging technology solutions spanning Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Vision, Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality (AR/VR), Robotics, Cyber Security, 5G & Edge, Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) & Mobility, and other future emerging technologies to help accelerate digital transformation.

Driving digital transformation with Industry 4.0

Delivering the keynote address at the launch, Nivruti Rai, Country Head of Intel India and Vice President, Intel Foundry Services, spoke about realising the potential of deeptech with digital transformation.

“It is absolutely essential to take India from being synonymous to software alone, into an area where India is synonymous to technology and deep technology and physical technology. We need to do something different. We need to come together with ideas, drive building solutions and focus on scaling those as well. ” she said.

Quoting a NASSCOM report, Nivruti added that if India leveraged AI correctly, it had the ability to generate half a trillion for its GDP by 2025.

“I'm excited about India being able to generate over a trillion dollars to its GDP through technology. And I'm excited that we together have an opportunity to help drive India at its 75th year of Independence. Let's dream of generating much more than a trillion dollars through technology in the next few years. We will leverage technology to address people's health, education, livelihood etc. and all we need to do is come together,” she said.

The launch event also featured an address by Bhavish Agarwal, Founder & CEO of Ola Electric, the startup that is building the world’s largest scooter manufacturing facility - a gigafactory with an annual capacity of 2 million units.

Gung ho about India's potential role with Industry 4.0, Bhavish said, “As a country, India needs to aim for being the leaders of the paradigms of tomorrow. The past paradigms were built in countries like China, but if we all get together and leverage efforts like these to scale up, I'm very confident that the future paradigms of manufacturing will be built here in India. And it's also very important that we, as a country, do not miss the new industry 4.0 revolution.”

Collaborative innovation is key to the success of implementing Industry 4.0 in the Indian scenario, and this needs the collaboration of stakeholders across enterprises, startups, SMEs, solution and scale providers, funding institutions, among others.

Talking about the path to global competitiveness from factory to consumer, Jeyandran Venugopal, Chief Product and Technology Officer, Flipkart said, “We have one of the largest consumer supply chains in the country. To be able to efficiently do this, we have invested in elements of robotics, automation and AI across every element of our supply chain. Any human process at the scale that we operate on can have significant negative outcomes which cannot be addressed by operational rigour, which is why we have significant levels of automation powered by technology.”

”Many of our Industries are yet to hit the Industry 3.0 level,” said Raman Vaidyanathan, CTO - Strategic Solutions, IOT & Embedded Systems Practice, Tech Mahindra. “Cost and customisations are important factors for India,” he added, saying Indian manufacturers express a tremendous amount of positive sentiment in taking the leap forward.

Why it matters

The launch of Plugin Alliance heralds the beginning of a journey to leverage technology - enabling India to become a global hub for smart industrial solutions. Digitalisation is transforming industries. With a growing manufacturing and technology ecosystem, India has a tremendous opportunity to innovate, build, adopt and scale Industry 4.0 solutions to enhance its global competitiveness. The formation of this alliance with key representatives of the ecosystem is a vital step in this direction. It aims to build India as a brand for the Industry 4.0 solution ecosystem and enhance the attractiveness of Indian manufacturing, globally.

Plugin Alliance’s members represent large enterprises, small and medium enterprises, technology solution providers, systems integrators, startups, the startup ecosystem including funding partners, relevant incubators, government, and industry bodies. The alliance, which currently has 53 members including 25 startups. is designed to evolve into a thriving community with the participation of these members, representing all facets of the Industry 4.0 ecosystem.

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