Invensys sets the scene for operational excellence through enterprise control

06 December 2010

In Mid November, over 800 Invensys customers, system integrators, and partner companies, together with the great and the good from the automation and control worlds, gathered at Disneyland Paris in France for the european OpsManage10 event.

Sudipta Bhattacharya, Invensys Operations Management President and Chief Executive Officer, set the scene at the recent OpsManage event near Paris
Sudipta Bhattacharya, Invensys Operations Management President and Chief Executive Officer, set the scene at the recent OpsManage event near Paris

The keynote speech saw Sudipta Bhattacharya, Invensys Operations Management President and Chief Executive Officer, set the scene for the event - achieving operational excellence through innovation - in both technology and thinking. "We are facing a real-time frontier," he said. "Things are happening in ever shorter time-scales - in minutes and seconds, not days and weeks. The planning cycle has shrunk. Energy prices, for example, are no longer static - they too change from minute to minute."

Bhattacharya went on to explain that today, all control areas need to be connected and can no longer work in a disparate fashion. He said: "Business control, production control, and process control all need to be connected in real-time, to allow for faster response times to an event. Our InFusion Enterprise Control System can offer an integrated framework to allow this real-time scenario to become reality. Invensys is now in an excellent position to help industry achieve operational excellence."

Bhattacharya joined Invensys as President of Wonderware in September 2007 and has been credited with initiating the new conceptual drive of the company - promoting an integration framework that brings together all its systems and products, as well as those from third-parties, in a real-time enterprise control system (ECS), allowing manufacturing companies to extend real-time decision support across all levels of the enterprise.

When Control Engineering Europe got the opportunity to speak with him at the event, Bhattacharya was enthusiastic about the rebranding exercise that he put into place less than two years ago, bringing together the nine Invensys divisions - Avantis, Eurotherm, Foxboro, IMServ, InFusion, SimSci-Esscor, Skelta, Triconex and Wonderware - into Invensys Operations Management. "I am pleasantly surprised…and a little bit nervous…about how well the rebranding has worked," he told us. He dared us to ask his team what they thought about the changes too. He said "The internal merger has worked very well. Ask the Invensys Operations Management staff what they think about it…I am confident that they will all agree! Our customers are happy. It just all makes more sense now."

When asked if there were any pieces still missing from the Invensys puzzle, Bhattacharya said: "We have made three acquisitions in the past three years and are still looking for smart technology companies that would be a good fit with our model, or to increase our geographic reach."

One of the acquisitions that Bhattacharya referred to was Skelta BPM, an Indian software company which has extended the company’s enterprise control strategy, and seems to have had a big role to play in fulfilling its vision for seamless, real-time, plant floor to board room visualization. Skelta’s BPM workflow software is built on Microsoft .NET, XML, and Web services technologies. It is designed to enable business users and developers to design and deploy BPM workflow applications using tools with which they are already familiar, and to leverage their existing investments in Microsoft technologies.

We asked Bhattacharya what he was most excited about. He answered: "In the short term I am excited about the potential that automating the entire manufacturing process can offer. There is a gap that needs to be filled. Being able to look more closely at apparently isolated events and giving them context will offer huge business benefits - Workflow is key to addressing this. It will allow us to accurately visualise the effect that an isolated event will have on the enterprise.

"In the longer term I think that Cloud will be massive. We already know that it is secure - most of us conduct our finances this way already - putting processing power onto the Cloud will change the way we all work, and is an area that I am very interested in."

Other highlights of the event included the European unveiling of a new PAC system developed to offer integrated hybrid control and data acquisition with a PLC price tag. (use LINKCODE 37465 for further information).

There were also new component announcements for the InFusion Enteprise Control System and a new Triconex general purpose system which offers a lower

The Triconex line allows clients to optimise the safety system to suit their specific requirements, enabling them to meet new safety standards, counter global competition and address cost pressures by lowering investment and lifecycle costs.

-cost entry point into this safety system product line.

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