How to fund Digital Manufacturing? (Authentise Weekly News-In-Review – Week 80)

Funds like Atomico are already forming a portfolio of startups poised to disrupt many verticals through IIoT, robotics and AI, and they are showing excitement for the future as well. There is tremendous value to be created through digital startups, many of which take on daunting challenges. The aptly named Automation Everywhere wants to bring, you guessed it, automation to any mundane human task, both physically and digitally, and has just raised $1.8 billion valuation. Similarly, company Katerra wants to reinvent how the construction industry is structured and has already raised $865 million in venture capital. But is Venture Capital really the right way to fund a B2B industry with slow sales? The fact that Automation Everywhere waited 15 years to raise its first funding, and Katerra is backed with $865m from Softbank indicates maybe not. Maybe more patient private capital, or even public markets – with their more limited growth objectives – are the right source of funding. Foxconn backing Andrew Ng, while Flex has backed ex-Autodesk CEO Carl Bass with $200m indicates it may be so. Our prediction: We’ll see a lot more interesting funding mechanisms in this industry going forward.

Data, AI & Robots: Atomico’s Take on Industry 4.0

Inexpensive sensors, cheap wireless communications infrastructure, highly scalable cloud-based data processing and novel machine learning methods have converged to a point where the building blocks are in place for a new Machine Age. Venture capital investment in internet-of-things in Industry (the decidedly ugly-sounding “IIoT”) is at an all time high, according to a CB Insights report on the topic, with over $1bn invested in Q4 2017 alone.

Read the full article at Medium.

Silicon Valley company that automates ‘mundane’ tasks with robots gets nearly $2 billion valuation

A Silicon Valley company that uses bots to automate certain tasks previously done by human workers has reached a $1.8 billion valuation with a new fundraising from several companies, including Goldman Sachs. San Jose, California-headquartered Automation Anywhere this week announced a $250 million round of fundraising — its first round of outside funding despite being in business for 15 years.

Read the rest here.

Can Silicon Valley Disrupt How We Build?

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Katerra announced that it had acquired Michael Green Architecture, a 25-person architecture firm in Vancouver, British Columbia. On June 12, the company revealed that it had bought another, larger architecture firm, Atlanta-based Lord Aeck Sargent. This comes five months after Katerra raised $865 million in venture capital from funders led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund, which has also invested heavily in the co-working startup WeWork. “The construction industry is ripe for digital disruption,” said co-founder and chairman Michael Marks in a press release. “This new round of funding will enable us to further invest in R&D and continue to scale the business.”

Read the full article here.

 

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Week in Review: November 15th to 21st – Industry 4.0 is HERE, Let’s Not Ignore It

Hey everyone, welcome to another Week in Review brought to you by Authentise.

Within the manufacturing industry it’s not always easy to spot the next transformative trend. Within the industry 4.0 we still have lot of ground to cover but the direction is clear: less human employment, higher throughput and much smarter management and upkeep. Nonetheless there are many who sweep the news under the rug and foresee more jobs coming in the near future or dismiss entirely the possibility of such a scenario to be of import to them.

We make the case that industry 4.0 is not only coming, it’s already here. What we once achieved with 25 employees we now do faster with 5. The sheer volume of data that we gather from our manufacturing operations is making it impossible to address it any other way. Let’s embrace the new technologies that will make our business perform better and faster and prepare the next generations to think of manufacturing in terms of interconnectedness and data.

Here are some news to pique your interest.

Manufacturing Jobs Aren’t Coming Back

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Pundits will debate the wellsprings of Donald Trump’s election triumph for years. The decades-long decline of U.S. manufacturing employment and the highly automated nature of the sector’s recent revitalization should also be high on the list of explanations. The former is a source of the working-class rage that helped get Trump elected. The latter is the main reason Trump won’t be able to “make America great again” by bringing back production jobs. Employment in the sector plunged from 18.9 million jobs to 12.2 million [in the last 30y]… More generally, the “job intensity” of America’s manufacturing industries—and especially its best-paying advanced ones—is only going to decline. In 1980 it took 25 jobs to generate $1 million in manufacturing output in the U.S. Today it takes five jobs.

Read the full article at MIT Technology Review.

 

IIoT: From Chaos to Order

Beth Comstock, vice chair at GE, recalled a time not so long ago when corporate executives smirked at the concept of the business value of streaming media. They laughed at the idea of exchanging “analog dollars for digital pennies”. But that’s exactly what happened in television as the industry reshaped itself around the streaming concept and, as a result, digital pennies became digital dollars. This same shift is coming to industry, Comstock said.

Keep reading here.

 

GE Additive to invest $10 million in two educational programmes

GE Additive have today announced a $10 million investment across five years in two educational programmes aimed at developing future talent in additive manufacturing. The additive specialists believe enabling educational institutions to provide access to 3D printers will help accelerate the adoption of additive manufacturing worldwide. “We want to build an ecosystem that drives additive manufacturing across multiple industries,” said Mohammad Ehteshami, Vice President of GE Additive. “GE is committed to this space for the long-term. A new world is coming and we want future generations to have exposure to it from an early age.”

Read more at TCT Magazine.

 

Also, check out the HUGE 3Diax Manufacturing Execution System announcement we made this week!

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