On 23 March 2017, Dr.-Ing. Thorsten Kettner, Group Senior Director Innovation Excellence, reported on the integration of the IP and innovation process landscape at Wilo during his dinner speech at the Master’s Program for Intellectual Property Law and Management (MIPLM) at the Center for International Intellectual Property Studies (CEIPI) at the University of Strasbourg.
Wilo is considered an innovation leader in the pump industry and has underpinned its claim to leadership with a record year in 2016 and the seventh year of growth in a row. R&D expenditures also continued to rise and reached a record level of almost € 110 million.
With the new Stratos Maxo, Wilo has just launched the world’s first smart pump as a digital high-end product. This pump will also be manufactured in the new smart factory as part of the digital transformation at Wilo. The digitalization strategy includes smart products, intelligent solutions and excellent processes.
Wilo products are characterized by the integration of mechanics, electrical engineering, electronics and more and more software. Due to the multitude of technologies that are integrated in the products, the system architecture is becoming increasingly important. In the innovation process there are system architects as an interface between the various engineering disciplines such as IT and hydraulics. This ensures that the components are coordinated within the end product. Attention is also paid to the integration of IP and innovation. In his speech, Dr. Kettner explained in particular the interaction between ideas and innovation management as well as the innovation strategy and the IP approaches. He dealt with questions of the practical implementation and pointed out a number of important success factors.