The Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the German Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel visited the facilities of Bosch in Bangalore. The visit is part of the chancellor’s three-day state visit to India, which focuses on innovation and technology, as well as skill development. At Bosch, the high-level delegation found out about the company’s research, engineering, and vocational education activities in India. “Our commitment to developing talent and the competence of our local engineers are part of our success story in India,” said Peter Tyroller, the member of the Bosch board of management responsible for Asia Pacific. He emphasized the significant contribution that Indian engineers have made to Bosch’s success story in India, as well as to their current importance for the company’s worldwide activities in many strategic areas such as data mining and smart manufacturing. “India is a key location in our global innovation network. To further strengthen our presence in the country, we plan to invest INR 650 crores (over 100 million euros) in 2015,” Tyroller added. The company recently opened a new site for the manufacturing of automotive components in Bidadi.
Over the medium and long-term, the company expects to see positive development in India. “The Indian government is systematically addressing key issues. We are confident that this will positively impact the country’s development,” said Dr. Steffen Berns, president of the Bosch Group in India. “Especially in areas such as mobility, infrastructure, industry, energy and security, there are many opportunities for our products and solutions,” Berns said.
Bosch implements smart manufacturing in India
The company also sees possibilities in India in the field of connected industry, or “Industry 4.0”. Bosch is a leading global provider and exponent of connected industry. The supplier of technology and services offers a broad range of solutions such as drives, automation, sensors, software, and predictive maintenance. “By 2018, we aim to implement connected production in all our 14 manufacturing locations across the country,” Berns said during the delegation’s visit. Industry 4.0 is already reality at several Bosch plants in India: In Bangalore, the company uses real-time data to shorten throughput times for the calibration of pumps for tractors. The location also provides associates with smartwatches that promptly notify them of a machine malfunction. Thanks to real-time monitoring, manufacturing downtimes can be prevented and productivity improved.
Outstanding competence of Bosch India’s software engineers
Bosch’s largest development center outside Germany is located in Bangalore and Coimbatore in southern India, and has over 12,000 research and development associates. One of the center’s areas of focus is on developing solutions for connected industry. Since 2014, the development center in Bangalore has also been focusing on big data analytics. One application example of data analytics is the “e-call modeling.” This estimates the probability of injury severity based on real-time vehicle, accident, and environment information. This information can be used by emergency service providers to prioritize the type of ambulance service needed to reach an accident location. To develop the solution, data-mining techniques were used to analyze automobile accident data collected by various government agencies.
Another innovation developed by the Bangalore-based development center is a compact retina camera. Its special software can detect medical conditions such as cataracts at an early stage. This light and cost-effective eye diagnostic tool was specifically designed to meet the needs of the Indian market, but can equally well be used in other, similar regions. In emerging markets such as India, Bosch focuses on products and solutions which are tailored to the local market. “We develop innovative solutions in India which are used in products around the world,” Steffen Berns said.
High demand for skills development in India
With 29,000 associates across India, Bosch is an important employer in the country. In 1961, Bosch brought the dual education approach to India and opened the Bosch Vocational Center (BVC) in Bangalore. Since it was founded in 1961, the BVC has trained over 2,500 apprentices in nine trades. On their tour of the Bosch vocational training center, Chancellor Merkel and Prime Minister Modi were given insights into the Bosch Group’s activities in vocational training, and in particular how it trains young people in India for technical trades. The BVC is recognized by the Indian government’s National Council for Vocational Training, and has received the Indian president’s “Best Establishment” award 50 times.
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