Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

DISCO Report Summary

Project ID: 717690

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - DISCO (Data Integrated Supply Chain Optimisation)

Reporting period: 2016-12-01 to 2017-10-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

To continue to prosper in high value manufacturing sectors, European businesses need to operate in the most efficient and cost effective manner leading to competitive pricing and maintaining world class standards of quality and delivery performance. It is therefore critically important to the success of European manufacturing businesses that companies – especially SMEs - can form integrated extended enterprises with other collaborating businesses so that all parties can focus on their core competence and offer competitive differentiation in the market. A critical success factor however is the alignment of disparate company business processes and embedding an integrated systems platform that enables collaborating businesses to streamline communication flow, order book status, capacity availability, inventory and performance levels. The consequences of not doing so will lead to operational inefficiencies and waste which will ultimately lead to poor customer satisfaction and /or competitiveness.

DISCO will enable fragmented manufacturing SMEs to collaborate and form competitive extended enterprises, optimise performance through real-time scenario planning and proactively manage supply chain risk and resilience.
The initial design of the collaborative supply chain platform was conceptualised through several years PhD research with University of Liverpool with inputs from an EU Framework 7 Project (Remplanet) and an ERDF funded supply chain collaboration project (Collaborate to Innovate) which has enabled the team to clearly define the challenge faced by manufacturing supply chains and the potential opportunity leveraged from supply chain collaboration and disparate systems integration.

DISCO will enable Valuechain.com to provide dynamic supply chain mapping and real-time scenario planning so that manufacturing SMEs optimise their internal production planning and external supply chain planning. SMEs can view the structure of their immediate supply chain and their sub-tier supply chain i.e. their suppliers’ suppliers etc., view real-time supply chain performance and order book status, inventory and manufacturing capacity and provide an integrated platform for extended enterprise tendering for collaborating SMEs so that they can compete with larger organisations. This will provide unprecedented visibility and optimisation decision support European manufacturing companies to monitor and mitigate supply chain risk, create dynamic collaborative supply chain networks by streamlining operations and reduce waste to improve global competitiveness.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

This final report summarises the key activities and achievements for the DISCO project which was originally planned for 24 months however this was reduced to 19 months due to immediate market opportunity and accelerated technology readiness.

We have had several technical, operational and commercial successes as explained within this final report such as:
• robust business plan, infrastructure and team embedded as foundation for rapid growth
• successful trials and piloting of Valuechain.com software solutions
• engagement with several global aerospace associations and strategic partners
• recruitment and development of sales, marketing, technical and operations teams
• embedding robust internal business processes and systems to underpin scalable growth
• winner of Northern Stars award and several global pitching events to accelerate engagement with venture capitalists in readiness for Phase 3.
• TRL advancement of several products from 4-6 to 7-9.
• successful deployments of all Valuechain.com software solutions at
o leading aerospace and automotive OEMs
o global aerospace and automotive clusters
o hundreds to advanced manufacturing SMEs

Technical:
• Development of DNAam production control for additive manufacturers such as Airbus.
• New user interface for iQluster following feedback from global industry associations
• Refining production control solutions and business improvement applications to be commercial grade tested with clients ranging from niche aerospace micro-SMEs through to primes such as Bentley Motors.
• Prototyping of supply chain big data modelling with Strathclyde University

Operational
• Several key recruitments have been made in technical, marketing, sales and operations roles which is underpinned by a robust training plan.
• The required hardware and software has been acquired and commissioned to provide the necessary infrastructure for developing and piloting the new technologies.
• Best practice business processes are being implemented from software development, data security through to CRM.
• Embedding ISO9001 and ISO27001 best practice processes.

Commercial:
• Commercialization with multiple global advanced manufacturing OEMs and Tier 1’s such as Airbus, Rolls Royce, Bentley Motors, BAE Systems, GKN,
• Commercialisation with multiple global industry associations to connect with their members, capture supply chain intelligence and promote inter-network collaboration
• More than doubled client base in 11 months from 220 to 500+ clients
• Proven route to market to upsell Valuechain apps to iQluster clients
• Attendance at several global industry exhibitions
• Generation of new marketing collateral and new website
• Engagement with global reseller partners

Infrastructure
Valuechain.com Enterprises Group Ltd acquired Tricorn Systems Ltd in March 2016 and the two businesses have been successfully integrated and focused on delivering DISCO objectives.
• Several key recruitments have been made in technical, marketing, sales and operations roles which is underpinned by a robust training plan.
• The required hardware and software has been acquired and commissioned to provide the necessary infrastructure for developing and piloting the new technologies.
• Best practice business processes have been implemented from software development processes, data security through to CRM.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Valuechain is actively engaged with more than 40 global industry associations to pilot state of the art supply chain collaboration and intelligence solutions and enable their members to create new competitive supply chain business models.

UK's Aerospace & Defence Association (ADS) have identified 40 progressive SC21 companies to collaborate as 4 working groups which share benchmark information and best practices. iQluster has been configured to enable the aerospace companies to connect and share data securely between collaborating businesses.

Valuechain have been working closely with the European Aerospace Cluster Partnership (EACP). Valuechain has developed a working passive demonstrator system for its 40 European cluster organisations and is planning on going live in Q2 2018 to become Europe's collaborative B2B platform.

iQluster has been selected as the collaborative B2B platform for the UK's Digital Readiness Level assessment tool which plans to engage with 30,000 UK manufacturing companeis by 2020.

Valuechain has developed significant traction from global advanced manufacturing OEMs with systems sold directly into Airbus, Rolls Royce, BAE Systems and Bentley Motors and has build a client base in excess of 550 customers generating annual recurring revenues in excesss of 800,000 euros which is growing rapidly.

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