New GSK CEO to become the most powerful woman in FTSE 100
Within the Financial Times Stock Exchange index of the top 100 UK companies...
Emma Walmsley is set to become the most powerful woman in the FTSE 100.
Within the Financial Times Stock Exchange index of the top 100 UK companies, only five are led by female CEOs - Walmsley will become the sixth when she takes over GlaxoSmithKline from Andrew Witty. While EasyJet, Imperial Brands, Whitbread, Royal Mail, and Kingfisher are run by women, GlaxoSmithKline boasts a market value of £80 billion – over double that of the second-biggest female-led business on the list – making Walmsley by far the most valuable.
Walmsley is currently CEO of the Consumer Healthcare Division. She graduated from Oxford University, and while her background is in marketing rather than science, GSK Chairman Sir Philip Hampton has offered a glowing endorsement of her abilities:
“I am very pleased to announce Emma’s appointment, after what has been a very thorough and rigorous global selection process carried out by the GSK Board of Directors.
“Emma is an outstanding leader with highly valuable experience of building and running major global businesses and a strong track record of delivering growth and driving performance in healthcare. Under Andrew’s leadership, GSK has successfully developed into a company with market-leading positions in pharmaceuticals, vaccines and consumer healthcare. These provide excellent platforms for sustainable, long-term growth, and we are confident Emma will successfully build on these strengths.”
Witty has run GSK for nearly ten years, and will leave in March. Walmsley has said of her future appointment:
“I am delighted and honoured to be appointed GSK’s next CEO. GSK is a company that leads both in science and in the way it does business. We have momentum in the Group and as the demand for medical innovation and trusted healthcare products continues to rise, we have the opportunity and potential to create meaningful benefits for patients, consumers, and our shareholders. I’m looking forward to working with Andrew and other leaders over the next few months to ensure a smooth handover and develop plans for 2017 and beyond.”
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Fluent.ai x BSH: Voice Automating the Assembly Line
Fluent.ai has deployed its voice recognition solutions in one of BSH’s German factories. BSH leads the market in producing connected appliances—its brands include Bosch, Siemens, Gaggenau, NEFF, and Thermador, and with this new partnership, the company intends to cut transition time in its assembly lines.
According to BSH, voice automation will yield 75-100% efficiency gains—but it’s the collaboration between the two companies that stands out. ‘After considering 11 companies for this partnership, we chose Fluent.ai because of their key competitive differentiators’, explained Ion Hauer, Venture Partner at BSH Startup Kitchen.
What Sets Fluent.ai Apart?
After seven years of research, the company developed a wide range of artificial intelligence (AI) software products to help original equipment manufacturers (OEM) expand their services. Three key aspects stood out to BSH, which operates across the world and in unique factory environments.
- Robust noise controls. The system can operate even in loud conditions.
- Low latency. The AI understands commands quickly and accurately.
- Multilingual support. BSH can expand the automation to any of its 50+ country operations.
How Voice Automation Works
Instead of pressing buttons, BSH factory workers will now be able to speak into a headset fitted with Fluent.ai’s voice recognition technology. After uttering a WakeWord, workers can use a command to start assembly line movement. As the technology is hands-free, workers benefit from less physical strain, which will both reduce employee fatigue and boost line production.
‘Implementing Fluent’s technology has already improved efficiencies within our factory, with initial implementation of the solution cutting down the transition time from four seconds to one and a half”, said Markus Maier, Project Lead at the BSH factory. ‘In the long run, the production time savings will be invaluable’.
Future Global Adoption
In the coming years, BSH and Fluent.ai will continue to push for artificial intelligence on factory lines, pursuing efficiency, ergonomics, and a healthy work environment. ‘We started with Fluent.ai on one factory assembly line, moved to three, and [are now] considering rolling the technology out worldwide’, said Maier.
Said Probal Lala, Fluent.ai’s CEO: ‘We are thrilled to be working with BSH, a company at the forefront of innovation. Seeing your solution out in the real world is incredibly rewarding, and we look forward to continuing and growing our collaboration’.