Industry 4.0 will fundamentally change cooperation between companies, their product and service offerings, and relationships with customers. The intelligent capturing and analysis of data offers market players new opportunities – regardless of whether startups, SMEs or major international corporations. Cross-sector mergers between companies in the ITC, production and automation technology industries in particular have the potential to break new ground. This will involve the development of new business models which are more closely tailored to specific customer demands. For example, it will be possible to directly take into account all of the information gathered by a smart product in the course of its lifetime in order to seamlessly integrate these into future product development.
Given that the Internet and software applications are playing an increasingly important role in business, software skills and technologies are becoming ever more important determinants of corporate success. They are the basis for the development of new business models in the age of Industry 4.0. Companies and company networks are therefore faced with the challenge of acquiring and expanding this expertise.
Cooperations between companies resulting from the rising level of integration also require a dependable and legally secure basis. It is also important to find answers to issues relating to funding, development, security, responsibility and liability. End-to-end documentation of the various production steps and phases of a cooperation is also indispensable. The issue of business models is therefore closely associated with the areas of security, legal frameworks and quality standards.