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How can manufacturers realize the potential of Smart Factories

| Point of View

A revolution in manufacturing is firmly underway. Infineon, a German semiconductor manufacturer, is investing $105 million in the next five years in order to turn its Singapore plant into a smart factory. It took robots and 3D Printing to make Adidas bring back manufacturing to Germany. A leading fragrance maker in Switzerland ramped up capacity by a third in the past three years, all through addition of robots.

Smart Factory Investment


To assess how manufacturers can drive most value from smart factories, we surveyed 1000 senior executives of large companies across key sectors and countries.


Here are the key findings from the research:

The prize:

  • Smart factories could add $500 billion to $1.5 trillion in value to the global economy in five years
  • Manufacturers predict overall efficiency to grow annually over the next five years at 7 times the rate of growth since 1990
  • We estimate that smart factories can nearly double operating profit and margin for an average automotive OEM manufacturer.


The challenge:

  • 76% of manufacturers either have a smart factory initiative that is ongoing or are working on formulating it. And more than half of manufacturers (56%) have aligned $100 million or more towards smart factories.
  • However, only 14% of companies are satisfied with their level of smart factory success. Only 6% of manufacturers are ‘Digital Masters’: at an advanced stage in digitizing production processes and with a strong foundation of vision, governance and employee skills.
  • Digital Masters outpace all other categories in realizing the benefits of smart factories


Download the Full Smart Factories Report (PDF)
Download the Full Infographic Smart Factory Research findings (PDF)


Smart Factories Infographic