MED-MTDC launch I4.0 Accelerator Programme with dual aim
By Tan Jee Yee December 10, 2019
- Prepare entrepreneurs to be I4.0 ready and prepare some to develop I4.0 solutions
- Phase Two will see around 50 entrepreneurs selected as “adopters” of 9 Pillars of I4.0
“Local SMEs (small-medium enterprises) can no longer just focus on marketing and manufacturing for the local market, but also ensure that their products and services are able to penetrate the global market,” says the Malaysian Entrepreneur Development Ministry (MED) secretary-general Wan Suraya Wan Mohd Radzi.
She was speaking at the opening ceremony of the MED-MTDC I4.0 Accelerator Programme, a pioneering project that is part of a strategic collaboration between the MED and the Malaysian Technology Development Corporation (MTDC).
The goal of the programme is to help local companies scaleup to a higher level in preparation for the Industry4.0 revolution in Malaysia, and they do so by assessing the potential of participating SMEs in their readiness to adopt any of the 9 Pillars of I4.0, on top of recommending viable and affordable I4.0 solutions for adoption.
Ultimately, this is to ensure that Malaysian micro- and small-medium enterprises can remain competitive and relevant in both the local and international market, notes Suraya.
She further points out that Malaysia is currently ranked 58th out of 137 countries in the Global Entrepreneurship Development Institute’s (GEDI) Global Entrepreneurship Index; and ranked 35th in the Global Innovation Index – indicating that there is room for improvement and gaps to fill.
The phases of the programme
The MED-MTDC I4.0 Accelerator Programme is participated by 100 enterprises, and is in line with the strategy that is part of the National Entrepreneurship Policy (DKN) 2030.
It will be executed in three phases, the first phase starting today with the last phase expecting to end in February 2020. Phase One will include the execution of a five-day workshop with the participation of the 100 Bumiputera SMEs as I4.0 “early adopters”.
In Phase Two, as many as 50 of the enterprises will be selected as “adopters” of the 9 Pillars of I4.0, which include autonomous robots, big data analytics, cloud computing, IoT, additive manufacturing (3D printing), system integration, cybersecurity, augmented reality and simulation.
For Phase Three, the companies that have adopted the I4.0 solutions will be recognised and evaluated by the MTDC Technopreneur Training Academy (TENTRA), which is responsible for the preparation of the I4.0 advancement training.
The programme doesn’t just benefit local companies by scaling them into I4.0 readiness, but also to help develop local companies that are providing industry 4.0 solutions by pairing them with the enterprises that need them.
“We took it for granted that [Industry 4.0] technology is supplied by foreign companies, especially MNCs,” says MTDC chief executive officer Norhalim Yunus. “With the programme, two parties will benefit: the entrepreneurs that we’re helping get ready for I4.0, and the entrepreneurs we’ve selected to be trainers and solution-providers for the SMEs. We have to develop I4.0 solution companies here, or we will forever have to rely on international companies.”