Implementing digital enterprise with smart financial solutions

by Roland Chalons-Browne

The term “manufacturing” may no longer be as easily defined by factory floors, assembly lines, and whirring machines, but its requirements are clear: In order to take the advice of the Hannover Messe motto for 2018 and “implement now” when it comes to the world of Digital Twins, cloud solutions and automation of all varieties, we are going to need some new financial approaches. As a definitive “digital enterprise” itself, Siemens had a memorable presence at the fair this year as we showcased the innovative technology and services that are actively shaping Industrie 4.0. Part of this offering includes the financing solutions that help our customers react to the accompanying market changes quickly and from a position of strength.

By looking at Industrie 4.0 as a broad, multifaceted concept, we realize that there are more paths to pursuing digital.
Roland Chalons-Browne, CEO of Siemens Financial Services

MindSphere and the various solutions across the company that support it provided a framework for many of the discussions that unfolded throughout the event. This cloud-based, open IoT operating system connects physical equipment and machinery to the digital world, offering the flexibility that an Industrie 4.0 solution requires to grow and change with the market and the digital environment.


With all that flexibility, you might assume that a transparent and feasible cost structure is an impossibility. But it has become abundantly clear in recent years that the equipment and machinery financing industry needs to undergo a transformation to keep up with digitalization and not just continue offering traditional financing models in new packaging. With that in mind, Siemens Financial Services has responded to this particular technological IoT innovation at Siemens with its own customized financial solution, a MindSphere-based pay-per-use Smart Performance Finance model which we introduced at the Hannover Messe with our first pilot OEM partners WFL and Hommel.


This intelligent financing concept calculates a customer’s leasing rates on the basis of actual usage data from a customer’s equipment and machinery collected and transmitted by MindSphere. As a result, the customer can pay off the products it acquired from Siemens’ OEM partners through flexible payments that reflect the performance of the machine. That is something brand-new in our industry and indicates the direction I am excited to see financial services take.


MindSphere’s flexibility and wealth of information allows us at Siemens to support our customers in their digital transformation through multiple channels. On the surface, of course, the technology has direct applications for IoT, but by leveraging it in our financing solutions as well, we can bring performance finance to a new level with integrated solutions. Combining engineering and financing expertise from the outset allows us to develop new, innovative business models for the challenges of our time.



Roland Chalons-Browne is Global CEO of Siemens Financial Services.



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