May 16, 2020

Hitachi set to purchase Elliot International’s stake in Ansaldo for $918mn

Asia
Japan
Hitachi
Leadership
Sean Galea-Pace
2 min
Hitachi has agreed to acquire Elliot International’s 31.7% stake in Ansaldo for a total figure of €808m ($918mn).
The Japan-based multinational conglomerate, Hitachi, has agreed to acquire Elliot International’s 31.7% stake in Ansaldo for a total figure of €808m...

The Japan-based multinational conglomerate, Hitachi, has agreed to acquire Elliot International’s 31.7% stake in Ansaldo for a total figure of €808mn ($918mn), Railway Technology reports.

In a deal signed by both Hitachi and its indirectly owned subsidiary, Hitachi Rail Italy Investments, Hitachi is set to offer €12.7 per Ansaldo share to Elliott which will see the firm take control of Elliot International’s almost 32% stake.

“This acquisition of shares is a further key milestone towards realising our ambition of becoming a global leader in total rail solutions,” said Alistair Dormer, CEO of Hitachi Railway Systems Business Units.

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According to Reuters, the close of the agreement brings an end to the disputes between Hitachi and Elliot over the full ownership of Ansaldo.

The disagreements began in 2015 when Hitachi attempted to buy the company’s stake in Ansaldo, however, the bid was rejected, as the amount offered was regarded as too low.

It is thought that Hitachi could invest up to €1.25bn ($1.4bn) in a move that would make the global firm the single owner of Ansaldo.

With the intention of delisting it, Hitachi is anticipated to try and acquire the remaining shares of Ansaldo.

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May 12, 2021

Gartner: Leaders Lack Skilled Smart Manufacturing Workers

SmartManufacturing
DigitalTransformation
DigitalFactory
ConnectedFactory
2 min
57% of manufacturing leaders feel that their organisations lack the skilled workers needed to support smart manufacturing digitalisation

With organisations rapidly adopting industry 4.0 capabilities to increase productivity, efficiency, transparency, and quality as well as reduce cost, manufacturers “are under pressure to bring their workforce into the 21st century,” says Gartner.

While more connected factory workers are leveraging digital tools and data management techniques to improve decision accuracy, increase knowledge and lessen variability, 57% of manufacturing leaders feel that their organisations lack the skilled workers needed to support their smart manufacturing digitalisation plans.

“Our survey revealed that manufacturers are currently going through a difficult phase in their digitisation journey toward smart manufacturing,” said Simon Jacobson, Vice President analyst, Gartner Supply Chain practice.

“They accept that changing from a break-fix mentality and culture to a data-driven workforce is a must. However, intuition, efficiency and engagement cannot be sacrificed. New workers might be tech-savvy but lack access to best practices and know-how — and tenured workers might have the knowledge, but not the digital skills. A truly connected factory worker in a smart manufacturing environment needs both.”

Change Management

Surveying 439 respondents from North America, Western Europe and APAC, Gartner found that “organisational complexity, integration and process reengineering are the most prevalent challenges for executing smart manufacturing initiatives.” Combined they represent “the largest change management obstacle [for manufacturers],” adds Gartner.

“It’s interesting to see that leadership commitment is frequently cited as not being a challenge. Across all respondents, 83% agree that their leadership understands and accepts the need to invest in smart manufacturing. However, it does not reflect whether or not the majority of leaders understand the magnitude of change in front of them – regarding technology, as well as talent,” added Jacobson.

Technology and People

While the value and opportunities smart manufacturing can provide an organisation is being recognised, introducing technology alone isn’t enough. Gartner emphasises the importance of evolving factory workers alongside the technology, ensuring that they are on board in order for the change to be successful.

“The most immediate action is for organisations to realize that this is more than digitisation. It requires synchronising activities for capability building, capability enablement and empowering people. Taking a ‘how to improve a day in the life’ approach will increase engagement, continuous learning and ultimately foster a pull-based approach that will attract tenured workers. They are the best points of contact to identify the best starting points for automation and the required data and digital tools for better decision-making,” said Jacobson.

Long term, “it is important to establish a data-driven culture in manufacturing operations that is rooted in governance and training - without stifling employee creativity and ingenuity,” concluded Gartner.

Discover Gartner's Five Best Practices for Post COVID-19 Innovation' in manufacturing.

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