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Penang’s UWC achieves 50% increased production with Siemens PLM: interviews

AvantiKumar | March 20, 2014
The manufacturing industry is entering a new digital era, which is transforming the way goods are made, said Siemens PLM's Rajiv Ghatikar.

You have indicated that this has been a significant move for the companies: what are your future plans?

Over the years, we have significantly reduced costs and time in our production, manufacturing and design cycles, which already puts us ahead of our competitors. Solid Edge has helped the company to further streamline processes from idea to design to manufacturing, allowing us to be more productive and achieve our goals in a shorter time frame. Additionally, the solution has saved UWC and its engineers and designers hours of re-work simply by allowing them to easily edit foreign data and cut down the time spent redrawing parts involving modifications on 3D models.

We've enhanced UWC's reputation within the market, delivering higher quality products and enabling us to keep up with the technological advancements of today's manufacturing landscape.

For the future, we aspire to be the "World Class" Contract Manufacturer solutions provider of choice to "Original Equipment Manufacturers" Worldwide. To be the customer's preferred supplier through outstanding value and at every price point, with high performance and reliability of product quality and on time delivery.


Rajiv Ghatikar_Siemens PLM Software 2 modified 

Photo - Rajiv Ghatikar, Vice President and General Manager for ASEAN/Australasia, Siemens PLM Software.

What's your take on the manufacturing industry and why UWC Holdings selected your solution?

RAJIV GHATIKAR: The manufacturing industry today is a dynamic but demanding business. It's a challenging and competitive industry, especially in Asia. In order for a company to remain competitive, they must leverage flexible solutions that can evolve with their changing needs. Many of UWC's customers work with a number of different CAD systems, so it was necessary for them to make the switch to a solution that could merge design management capabilities across the CAD technologies that their designers use every day.  

In terms of the market and trends, the manufacturing landscape across the region is getting increasingly competitive as more established Asian companies are facing new competition within the emerging markets, as well as the added pressure from other globally-focused players expanding into the region.

As the market continues to heat up, we see more companies turning to PLM as a solution to streamline end-to-end processes, lower costs and increase the speed of developing new, complex innovations. Additionally, IT breakthroughs like cloud computing, the proliferation of mobile devices and Big Data are pushing PLM beyond traditional organisational boundaries.

Now is the right time for companies to consider their growth opportunity, and leverage PLM strategies to achieve their individual goals.

This is a particularly interesting time for our customers, as we begin to see the convergence of manufacturing and information technology, also known as the "Internet of Things." With more 'smart' machinery now connected to the internet and capable of capturing real-time data, product complexity is becoming a big issue.

Many traditional manufacturing companies just aren't equipped with the kind of in-depth IT infrastructure on the product design side. Manufacturers realise that they need to become more like IT companies in order to capture, control and profit from the data generated by this new generation of smart industrial technology. Controlling and owning that data can open up new business opportunities for them.

So we believe manufacturers will begin to dramatically build out that infrastructure - most likely through strategic partnerships - and the PLM process itself will expand to enable and incorporate these new capabilities. Manufacturers must find a way to quickly and efficiently build these vastly complex products and then leverage that data to drive intelligent business decisions in real-time.

Having identified this crucial need, UWC Holdings chose Solid Edge as their PLM solution of choice because it has a proven track record of helping organisations shorten the product development cycle time by accelerating the design process through vastly improved collaborative environments and more intuitive process flows. Solid Edge has helped UWC to drive innovative products more quickly than the competition by supporting their extensive integration experience, strengthening production machining solutions and applications, and helping their customers achieve the best possible advantages.

Solid Edge allows our partners and customers to manage the entire lifecycle of a product efficiently and cost-effectively from the ideation, design and manufacture phase, all the way through to service and disposal. It has helped us to guide projects towards an accurate and error free design cycle. Our customers, like UWC Holdings, are seeing enhanced financial performance, increased cost savings and shorter production times throughout the value chain whilst delivering superior solutions to their customers at a lower cost.

Companies across all industries are constantly challenged by a number of factors, including increasing product complexity, regulatory requirements, and global development with local requirements. Many have come to appreciate how PLM technology and improved processes can help them overcome these challenges. Through our industry know-how, the Industry Catalyst Series, we accelerate the time and value of each industry implementation while providing an environment for swift adoption of new technology. This series was specially designed to minimize disruption by delivering industry-tailored, rapid deployments that enable companies to experience the full value of PLM much more quickly.

Ultimately, every great product is the product of great decisions - not just the big milestones, but the millions of decisions that lead up to them. We have a HD-PLM vision where we aim to give everyone involved in an organisation's product a clearer view of the information they need to make optimal decisions. We are building an immersive decision-making environment in which people don't search for information but the information finds them. And they don't interpret information, it comes in a context they readily understand.

By delivering intelligently integrated information at exactly the right time, in the right context, and with the right level of detail, Siemens PLM Software's HD-PLM helps organisation achieve a new level of productivity, make smarter decisions and deliver greater products.

What are your plans for the region - and what sort of projects are you excited about?

Looking back, 2013 was a very strong year for Siemens PLM Software. We announced the latest release of our key software technologies, Solid Edge ST6 and NX9, and unveiled the Industry Catalyst Series - a prepackaged industry solution combining industry-specific best practices, implementation templates and software designed to work with Siemens PLM offerings. The Industry Catalyst Series accelerates our customers' PLM value and ROI while establishing an environment for the swift adoption of new technologies.

We have received a lot of recognition for our leadership and best-in-class solutions throughout the region. We were recognised as the Best PLM Systems Provider, Top PLM Supplier and named General Motors Supplier of the Year four times in the last years. In 2013, the company won accolades at the Asian Manufacturing Awards, - having been recognized as the Best PLM Systems Provider and Best CAD Systems Provider for the second consecutive year. This is a great achievement for us and cements our status as an industry leader.

Our business across ASEAN has always been very partner-driven, and we are constantly searching for ways to better serve our diverse base of customers. While we continue to build and strengthen our existing partner relationships, we are aiming to establish new channel partners throughout the region as well. We are constantly working towards improving and upgrading our existing PLM product ecosystem, at the same time drive new offerings that will help our partners and customers innovate faster and productively.

As ASEAN companies look to maintain and widen their global footprint, it is critical that they ensure their operations are efficient and waste is minimised. Siemens PLM will focus on a more industry centric approach for 2014 to specifically address the challenges faced by each of the vertical industries namely automotive, industrial machinery, offshore marine and aerospace and defense. Companies are positioning themselves to embrace growth driven by innovation, collaboration across the value chain, and the rapidly changing manufacturing and decision support technology. With this in mind, we aim to increase our contribution to the ASEAN manufacturing economy through collaborative decision support platforms for systems-driven product development. It is our responsibility to help manufacturers achieve cross-functional knowledge sharing and make more informed decisions, while understanding decision impacts throughout the value chain

We have several exciting industry and product launches on the horizon throughout the region this year, as well as some key events that we are looking forward to. From April onwards, we are having a series of industry launches across the ASEAN markets. There will be two key trade shows we will be participating this year to showcase our Solid Edge and Femap solutions suite - InterMach 2014, ASEAN's leading industrial machinery and subcontracting exhibition to be held May 15-17, and InterMold 2014, the only show in Thailand for Mold & Die Manufacturing to be held June 19-22.


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