When the world goes digital, paper is against the wall – that’s the first thought when it comes to digitalization. But even if the digital transformation of analog processes can create efficient solutions, it can never completely replace paper: In the paper processing industry, for example the packaging industry. In Germany alone, almost 12 million shipments were transported per delivery day last year – all packed in cardboard and paper.

The resource paper is therefore a valuable resource. And the paper-processing industry has a great interest in making the best possible use of it, wasting as little as possible and making warehousing as efficient as possible. This also requires well coordinated machines. This is where extensive and long-term opportunities for digitalization present themselves.

In the recently presented study “Digital Innovation in Medium-Sized Businesses (Digitale Innovation im Mittelstand)” by Alexander vom Humboldt Institut für Internet und Gesellschaft and Sirius Minds, the example of BHS Corrugated Maschinen- und Anlagenbau GmbH is presented, among others.

With its Industrial Internet of Things platform, the traditional manufacturer of corrugators has maintained and further consolidated its position as world market leader.

Best case for the customers

The customers of BHS Corrugated produce corrugated board. The IIoT platform created by the plant manufacturer was developed to collect and analyze data from these machines and to feed the results back to the customers. In the cloud solution developed in-house, data streams of up to 3,000 datasets per plant are stored with a latency of up to one second and processed by machine learning. The results are made available to customers for their process optimization, who can use this valuable information base to make better decisions to increase productivity.

Visible success of this digitalization solution

“We see the success of the project in the increasing customer demand for such solutions,” explains Chief Digital Officer Dr. Christian Schieder of BHS Corrugated in an interview with HIIG. “We are also already ready to monetize our solution. That means it is economically successful.

Schieder emphasizes in particular that during the development of the project it has already become clear how many more services can be offered to customers through the digitalization measure than were originally in the target focus. “We very quickly realized that we can offer the customer the most added value if we focus on his overall efficiency.

Another positive side effect: “The biggest surprise was actually that we came up with completely new ideas for completely new business models during the course of the project.

Video interview with Dr. Christian Schieder

The big solution right away or start small first?

No matter if a company is planning a big solution right away or wants to start digitalization in small steps: A product like erminas PAPr for the use in reel logistics can be part of a big strategy in the reel and paper processing industry as well as a modular entry into digitalization.

With erminas PAPr, trade flows are documented and the real-time stock can be displayed. The lifecycle of a paper roll is reported to the ERP system in real time, from the recording at delivery to the documentation of the running meters directly at the machine.

This ensures foresighted and efficient warehouse logistics and planning reliability for production.

More solutions for the paper processing industry

If you would like more in-depth information on this topic, need inspiration and advice on possible digital strategies, or would like to develop a joint strategy in a workshop with stakeholders and digitalization experts, please contact our Strategic Consulting Team. We support you from the very first ideas and work with you to implement efficient digitalization solutions over the long term. For a future-oriented digital transformation of your company.