Utthunga CTO Rushendra Babu on how India can meet the demands of Industry 4.0 

Utthunga offers a wide variety of industrial products and solutions such as OPC Suite, Simulators, Edge Softwares, Edge Device Management, Network Diagnostics, etc.

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Utthunga Technologies provide software development, firmware & hardware development, IIoT applications, IT-OT integration, field device integration, industrial communications, security engineering and testing services to global industrial OEMs and manufacturers. The product engineering and industrial solutions company aims to facilitate the development of the government’s goal of 25% contribution to the GDP from manufacturing output. Analytics India Magazine got in touch with Rushendra Babu, Chief Technology Officer at Utthunga, to understand how well-aligned the firm is to meet the demands of Industry 4.0.

AIM: What gap does Utthunga address in India’s digital transformation? 

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The major gap in implementing transformation programs is getting the right combination of operational technology (OT), industry knowledge, and IT integration. Utthunga bridges all these factors efficiently. Backed with hands-on industry experience in both IT and OT sectors and having worked with worldwide automation OEMs and Industry SME pool, Utthunga provides unified solutions of global standards.

Unfettered access to the data generated from the plant floors is the key to digital transformation. Given the heterogeneous, legacy, digitally non-native mix of assets on the plant floor, raw data often remains locked in their silos. Utthunga is uniquely positioned to unlock the access to the data and provide it to various kinds of consumers: Operators with handhelds, SCADA/HMI, enterprise applications, analytics applications etc.

AIM: What are the major products and services of Utthunga?

Utthunga offers a wide variety of industrial products and solutions such as OPC Suite, Simulators, Edge Softwares, Edge Device Management, Network Diagnostics, etc. Industry services and applications like Asset Management & Predictive Maintenance, Product Engineering, Solution Engineering & Deployment, EPC, Device Integration, and Communication Protocols are also key offerings from Utthunga.

AIM: Explain the tech stack behind your offerings.

We have a good strength of resources and experts in major digital technologies such as Messaging, Machine Learning, Mobile, Hybrid & Big Database. We also cater to recent technological trends covering Container technology – Docker, Kubernetes, Hybrid and Cloud-agnostic Infrastructure, Workflow Engines, and industrial Data Security Management. On the core OT (Operational Technology), we have rich expertise in field-level communication protocols like Ethernet/IP, EtherCAT, IO-Link, HART, and several others. Technologies like TSN, APL, 5G are areas we have already started to consult and services global OEMs. 

AIM: What are the key focus areas of Utthunga?

We specialise in various sectors like O&G, Energy & Power, Discrete Manufacturing, Pharmaceuticals, Food & Beverages, Metals & Mining, Shipping, and Logistics.

We are working with a well-known battery manufacturer to improve efficiencies by shifting one of their current crucial operations to digital, eliminating the tedious and cumbersome paperwork. In one of our other interesting projects, we are collaborating with a customer in the Oil and Gas industry to conduct a predictive intervention to improve the performance of their oil wells. To avoid regulatory violations, we are also working with Shipping companies to identify and eliminate pilferage and fuel usage patterns.

AIM: How can India meet the demands of Industry 4.0?  

This requires a strong push among industries to raise awareness of short term and long-term advantages of Industry 4.0 adoption to run their business profitably, safely and securely. The ecosystem partners must have to enable this through consultancy, training, audits & evaluations, experience centers, and intensive competency development programs to upskill the workforce. 

AIM: How do we incentivise technology adoption to achieve ‘Make-in-India’ targets? 

A few points here when it comes to encouraging the industry to adopt technologies:

  • Incubator programs with industry and academia like IMPRINT, UAY etc., must be encouraged to innovate solutions to solve the challenges of Indian industries, markets, environmental protection, people safety etc. 
  • Incentivise capital to implement industry 4.0 focusing on energy conservation, pollution control, safety, security etc. 
  • Reduce the cost of implementing industry 4.0 solutions through selective subsidies on technologies and products deployed. 
  • Encourage startup in industry 4.0 solution offering through funding and tax holidays. 
  • Encourage consumption of local innovative solutions through some subsidies. 
  • Encourage MNCs to innovate in India through joint funding and tax incentives on R&D investments.
  • ‘Manufacturing Cloud’ incentives could be awarded for participants demonstrating collaborative yet distributed practices of production, resulting in world-class products at a rapid pace. 
  • A mandatory self-evaluation and competency assessment program could be designed for every industry, similar to IT or Udyam self-assessment.  
  • A maturity-score model could be designed and linked to productivity, innovation, and performance parameters at different levels. Such an indicator, similar to the CIBIL score, will facilitate merit-based borrowing and financial incentives from the government. 

AIM: How did Utthunga evolve over the years?

We have evolved and grown from providing engineering services to OEMs to becoming Solution Provider and Managed Services Partner for clients. Also, we have expanded our portfolio from a niche player in Communication Protocols and Device Integration to a Systems & Solutions Integration company at the production, operations, and business levels.

AIM: Tell us about Utthunga’s expansion plans. 

Over the last 14 years, we have steadily grown and expanded our business in different industrial sectors. As a result of our committed and focused efforts, we have now entered the ring of rapid growth. Over the next three years, we see ourselves among global prominent performers in executing Digital Transformation Solutions across numerous verticals, especially; Energy & Power, Discrete Manufacturing, Pharmaceuticals, Food & Beverage, Metals & Mining, and Shipping.

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Avi Gopani
Avi Gopani is a technology journalist that seeks to analyse industry trends and developments from an interdisciplinary perspective at Analytics India Magazine. Her articles chronicle cultural, political and social stories that are curated with a focus on the evolving technologies of artificial intelligence and data analytics.

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