Bilfinger aligns with strong partners for digital projects

June 12, 2018

  • Strategic partnership with Software AG
  • New technology cooperation with Microsoft Germany
  • Extended technical cooperation with Siemens AG

In the future, industrial services provider Bilfinger will be working together more closely with Software AG, Microsoft Germany and Siemens AG. Bilfinger's process plant know-how will be linked to the global digital expertise of these partners through strategic alliances and technical cooperations. For process industry customers, this will create a more comprehensive offering precisely tailored to their needs - one that will allow the potentials of digitalization to be fully realized.

Tom Blades, CEO at Bilfinger SE: "We have attracted strong teammates for our digital projects. This allows us to take our customer offerings to a higher level. We are now in a unique position to decisively shape the digital transformation in the process industry. We offer digital solutions that cannot currently be found on the market in this form."

With the strategic partnership between Bilfinger and Software AG signed today at the ACHEMA, Bilfinger's digital technology BCAP (Bilfinger Connected Asset Performance) will be linked with the IT platform Cumulocity from Software AG. With the help of BCAP, the efficiency of plants is increased substantially, maintenance costs are lowered and unplaned downtimes decreased. The combination of BCAP and Cumulocity offers customers a fast and extensive analysis of OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness) forming the basis for reduction of OPEX and improvements in plant availability. The technical integration of Cumulocity in BCAP means that networked devices and sensors can be integrated more quickly and easily. With the data that is collected and the findings that are derived from that data, an efficient pre-emptive plan of action can be developed.

Karl-Heinz-Streibich, CEO of Software AG: "Bilfinger Digital Next is a hugely creative approach to lowering IoT entry barriers. It limits upfront investments and reduces complexity for large chemical, pharmaceutical and Oil & Gas enterprises and also for medium sized companies. Covering all relevant aspects of digitalization Bilfinger Digital Next will significantly reduce customer risk and accelerate time to value."

Technology cooperation with Microsoft Germany started
Bilfinger is cooperating with Microsoft on the technological implementation of its new solutions and further development of digital services for industrial companies and is relying on the globally scalable and secure infrastructure and platform services from Microsoft Azure. In terms of data management within the scope of BCAP, both the infrastructure and the platform services of the Microsoft cloud are used. Microsoft Azure allows for the consistent implementation of hybrid cloud environments - from application development through to administration and security and including identity management.

Sabine Bendiek, Chairwoman of the Management Board, Microsoft Germany: “With the new services, Bilfinger is offering customers in the process industry comprehensive digital solutions for the digitalization of production processes and making it possible to achieve substantial efficiency enhancements. Bilfinger thus enables its customers to carry out their own digital transformation and achieve sustainable cultural change – in line with our motto ‘Digitalization for Everyone’.”

Intensified technical cooperation with Siemens AG
Bilfinger is intensifying its longstanding cooperation with Siemens. Bilfinger is thus in a position to further develop the engineering & maintenance platform Comos. The shared data basis also offers sufficient flexibility for individual project requirements. Further, the software solution makes it possible to react quickly to requirements and change requests from the customer and to increase the reliability of quality, engineering and maintenance.

Eckard Eberle, CEO of the Business Unit Process Automation: "With Bilfinger, we are very pleased to have found a partner that is in a position to enrich our Comos software with knowledge of the industry. The customer benefits from the pre-configured expertise from Bilfinger and achieves fast value creation through the use of Comos."

As a plant engineering and plant management software, Comos comprises the process and process engineering design of components and systems through to complete automation. The system landscape, covering everything from engineering through to operation, increases efficiency across all phases of the plant lifecycle.

Bilfinger Digital Next focuses digitalization competence
Digitalization is a key growth driver. The consulting need in the process industry is extensive and is especially pronounced at medium-sized companies. Following successful digital pilot projects with Münzing Chemie and CABB as well as ongoing projects with well-known industrial companies such as Siegfried, Bilfinger is focusing its innovative digitalization business in the new subsidiary Bilfinger Digital Next as of July 1. This unit will be the center of competence for digitalization, a place within the Group where experts and knowledge are brought together. The new company will be managed by Franz Braun (CEO) and Johannes Büttner (CFO).

CEO Tom Blades: "With Bilfinger Digital Next we are putting digital projects in the fast lane and ensuring we are able to react flexibly to customer requirements. We are intimately familiar with the operations of our customers and at the same time, have a strong understanding of the digitalization of these processes. We believe that we can build bridges between the process industry and IT. To put it differently: We used to build concrete bridges, today we are building digital bridges."

With its digital technologies, Bilfinger is in a position to significantly increase the efficiency of plants, decrease maintenance costs and to reduce unplanned downtimes. The concept behind it all is called "BCAP" (Bilfinger Connected Asset Performance) which complements and gives a positive boost to traditional maintenance services. Target markets for Bilfinger Digital Next will initially be the core regions Continental and Northwest Europe. In a second step, Bilfinger Digital Next already has North America and the Middle East in its sights.