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Industry 4.0 push will lead Lectra to big R&D investment

Leather-cutting technology provider Lectra has said it will invest 10% of its revenues in research and development between 2017 and 2019.

Marketing director of the technology company, Céline Choussy Bedouet, made the announcement at the start of Lectra’s third annual automotive leather conference in Bordeaux on April 19. She explained that the new investment will mean that, by 2019, Lectra will be spending 50% more on research and development than it did in 2016.

She explained that the company is preparing to launch applications and services that will help its customers move into the fourth industrial revolution (Industry 4.0). She insisted: “We’ve been working on this, on the Internet of Things, for ten years now. We already have applications that put the factory at the heart of the value chain by connecting different operations in real time, allowing business to see things they could not see before and allocate their resources more intelligently.”

Ms Choussy Bedouet said selected key customers will test these Industry 4.0 services, with an official worldwide launch of the new applications taking place in 2018. This will continue in 2019, with further new applications coming on stream then.

Specific to automotive leather, she said new ideas will include an integrated design concept for producing car seats in compliance with Industry 4.0 and a fully connected leather cutting-room that will help customers optimise their leather use, improve the quality of their cutting operations and improve their operational excellence.

“We are co-thinking and co-designing our Industry 4.0 offering with our customers,” the Lectra marketing director.

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