NITTOKU is a Japanese manufacturer and distributor of coil winding machines, and its products are installed and utilized by many factories clients around the world. However, due to the high customization and complexity of NITTOKU’s products, it is difficult for local client workers alone to assemble and repair the products. NITTOKU used to dispatch skilled technicians from Japan to deal with parts assembly and malfunction. However,
this option has become difficult because of COVID-19.
In order for Japanese industrial machine manufacturers like NITTOKU to adhere to high standards of service and continuously create new value
add to customers, NITTOKU needs to work around the issue of being unable to send engineers to set up/troubleshoot at client sites.
This diversion of resources and inefficiency in work process is critical to the growth of NITTOKU’s business.
Taking this into account, as a leading company in coil winding machine, NITTOKU would like to be front-runner in overcoming this situation.
NITTOKU would like to envisage a consolidated model of business structure and focus on virtual network expansion with all machine manufacturers who faces this kind of difficulties in South East Asia.
In this program, we want to address two issues that NITTOKU is currently facing.
Challenge 1: Remote Machine Set-up
When NITTOKU’s products (e.g. coil winding machine) are exported, they are not always exported as a finished products. Instead, some products
are re-assembled locally. This assembly process requires high level of knowledge and skills , which is difficult to be accomplished by local workers alone. During COVID-19 period, machine set-up and trouble shooting at site may take up to few months to complete, including the quarantine period, severely delaying the entire workflow.
Challenge 2: Remote Malfunction Counselling
Due to the high degree of customization to each customer and the complexity of the product structure, it is often highly complicated for local
staff to solve the abnormalities or malfunctions reported alone. For this reason, similarly, NITTOKU used to dispatch skilled engineers from Japan
to provide solutions. However, COVID-19 situation has made this difficult.
Solution 1: Support for Setting Up Machines (SSUM)
For the first challenge of product assembly, NITTOKU seeks a partner with technology (e.g. 3D images, 360 degree video, etc.) that allows technicians to fully understand the local environment without leaving Japan. Based on that, they will be able to guide local workers on what tasks need to be done and in what order. This solution requires more spatial information than the second one.
Solution 2: Counseling Service by Augmented Reality (CSAR)
For the second challenge, NITTOKU looks for a partner whose technology (e.g. AR) can enable local workers to share the same real time view with Japanese technicians, regardless of their geographical location, so that the Japanese technicians can understand the problems that occurred and provide relevant solutions.
We would like to combine some kind of immersive technology (e.g. visual technologies such as XR, motion sensors, wearables) to enable skilled technicians in Japan to remotely share spatial information & give instructions to local workers.
Through these solutions, NITTOKU hopes to overcome the travel restriction which has temporarily impaired many businesses as well as the world economy, improving the efficiency and productivity of both NITTOKU and their clients.
Intellectual Capital from NITTOKU
With satellite factories & offices established in 13 countries and end users spread across the world, NITTOKU provides appropriate scale and necessary resources to study, explore and simulate the remote support using partner’s technologies. It will also provide real platforms to test
Value Proposition to Partner
NITTOKU will consider the opportunity to collaborate with the selected partner in a paid Pilot test. If the Pilot case is successful, NITTOKU may also consider expanding its application to clients in other regions.
There are many companies facing similar challenges around the world. The challenge may also stay for another few years before COVID-19 situation can be well controlled. If the implementation at NITTOKU is successful, there will be many opportunities to further expand to other manufacturers in Southeast Asia, or even across the world.
We are open to applications that match the content of the challenge statement, even if the solution is not a direct solution now.
We welcome proposals which employ technologies that achieve similar goals, including but not limited to the above. We encourage suggestions
on possible solid ideas on solutions.
There are no limitations on operation and funding size in the partners we seek, though you should display a feasible approach to achieve the
vision of collaboration.
Assets provided by the Challenge Owner
1. Opportunity to conduct a PoC (including provision of resources from applicant)
2. Consideration of concluding an agreement for commercialization (based on the results of the above PoC)
Shunsuke Akihara: NITTOKU Singapore, Managing Director
Joined NITTOKU Japan in April 1996 and was transferred to the Singapore subsidiary in May 2011. Main in-charge territories are Southeast Asia and India. NITTOKU Singapore acts as an important role as a regional HQ where it has representative offices in Malaysia, Vietnam and India. Furthermore, he served as a representative of the NITTOKU Thailand subsidiary since January 2020. The main role is regional management across countries in Southeast Asia. To drive and thrive NITTOKU in Southeast Asia by collaborating among 50
national staff in seven countries.
Bunpo Domigo: NITTOKU Singapore, Sales Leader
Previously working in Japanese manufacturing company in Japan before joining NITTOKU Singapore in 2015.