Tuesday 21 January 2020

Norm Gilsdorf

UAE, Saudi firms 'feel IIoT is critical for business'

UAE, June 23, 2019

Two-thirds of medium-to-large organisations in the UAE (68 per cent) and Saudi Arabia (66 per cent) believe that Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies are critical to business operations, or will become critical in the next five years, according to a new report by Honeywell, a global technology leader.

Honeywell partnered with YouGov and IDC to launch the “IIoT Market Spotlight – UAE & Saudi Arabia” study, which analyses the views of approximately 250 C-level executives at companies in the UAE and Saudi Arabia across the buildings and cities, transport and logistics and industrial sectors.

The report features insights from interviews with executives to gauge their perceptions, degree of implementation and investment outlook on IIoT-enabled technologies and digitalisation initiatives within their organisations.

Norm Gilsdorf, president for Honeywell, High Growth Regions, Middle East, Russia and Customs Union, said: “Digitalisation initiatives and Industrial Internet of Things technologies are revolutionising the way companies across the Middle East operate, by connecting disparate systems across industrial operations to derive previously untapped information that can drive new growth.”

“Our survey reflects a strong and growing appetite to embrace digitalisation across UAE and Saudi Arabia. Our customers are generating more data from increasingly connected operations, and are asking for technologies to aggregate this data and convert it into insights that drive profitability. Through the right combination of hardware, software, analytics and cybersecurity, these companies are poised to realize the gains Industry 4.0 has to offer,” added Gilsdorf.

Increasing the performance of operations was highlighted as a main benefit by survey respondents currently leveraging IIoT solutions in both countries (UAE 50 per cent and Saudi Arabia 51 per cent). Time savings came in second as a key benefit (UAE 48 per cent and Saudi Arabia 50 per cent) and increased revenues came third (UAE 28 per cent and Saudi Arabia 38 per cent).

Other findings included:

• Almost half of companies are already investing in IIoT today: In the UAE, 46 per cent of decision-makers surveyed say their companies are already investing either moderately or heavily in IIoT, with 40 per cent of organisations in Saudi Arabia reporting similar investment.

• A majority of companies surveyed plan to increase IIoT investments in the next five years: In the UAE, 72 per cent of the decision-makers say their companies will increase investments in IIoT, with 64 per cent of organisations in Saudi Arabia reporting a similar outlook.
• Cybersecurity will become more critical: Executives also report a growing appetite for investments in cybersecurity solutions in the next five years in both the UAE (75 per cent) and Saudi Arabia (68 per cent).

• Fears over data security, budget issues and staff training are holding firms back: Data protection (39 per cent) and a lack of funding (37 per cent) are deemed to be the main challenges to IIoT adoption in the UAE. While a lack of digital culture (50 per cent) and a lack of qualified staff and training (46 per cent) are cited as key hurdles in Saudi Arabia.  

As part of its commitment to advancing digital transformation in the region, Honeywell has launched two innovation and knowledge-exchange hubs in the UAE in the past year. The company will also open a new training and knowledge-sharing hub for IIoT technologies in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, representing continued significant investment and commitment to digitalisation efforts.

The Honeywell Masdar Innovation Center in Abu Dhabi and the Honeywell Technology Experience Center in Dubai are designed to encourage collaboration and engagement between stakeholders and facilitate the co-creation of industry-specific solutions through the adoption of IIoT technology.

Together, the centres demonstrate solutions for a range of sectors including industrials comprising oil and gas, refineries, manufacturing; smart buildings, cities and hospitality; as well as transport, aviation, supply chain and logistics.

The company also established the Honeywell Industrial Cybersecurity Center of Excellence in Dubai last year, a pioneering technology centre that tests and demonstrates process control network vulnerabilities and threats, trains regional customers with real-time attack simulations and provides advanced customer consultations.

In the Middle East for more than 60 years, Honeywell’s solutions blend physical products with advanced software to create value for customers while supporting long-term national development visions and economic diversification across the region, it stated. – TradeArabia News Service


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