IBM opens global Watson headquarters in Munich

The facility is home to 'cognitive collaboratories' for Internet of Things work with clients and partners.
By Bernie Monegain
11:13 AM
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IBM Watson Munich

Harriet Green, left, global head of Watson IoT, and Bavarian State Minister of Economic Affairs and Media, Energy and Technology Ilse Aigner press the button to activate IBM's new global center for Watson IoT. Photo courtesy of IBM.

IBM opened Thursday its $200 million global headquarters that houses the Watson Internet of Things business. Big Blue also highlighted its initiative to drive collaboration and innovation with dozens of clients and partners in what IBM executives call “first-ever cognitive collaboratories.”

Collaborating with IBM are Avnet, BNP Paribas, Capgemini and Tech Mahindra. The companies will collocate development teams at the IBM center, which will also provide space for the European IoT standards organization EEBus.

“We have reached a tipping point with IoT innovation,” Harriet Green, general manager, IBM Watson IoT, said in a statement. IBM Watson IoT has more than 6,000 clients and partners around the world, many who are eager to “co-innovate,” Green added.

To date, IBM has announced five companies have signed up to join its "collaboratories," where clients and partners work together with IBM’s one thousand Munich-based IoT experts to, as IBM puts it, “tap into the latest design thinking and push the boundaries of what is possible with IoT” – in a wide range of industries, including medicine and healthcare.

IT distributor and global IBM partner Avnet will open a new joint IoT Lab within IBM's Watson IoT headquarters  to develop, build, demonstrate and sell IoT solutions powered by IBM Watson. Working closely with IBM's leading technologists and IoT experts, Avnet also plans to enhance its IoT technical expertise through hands-on training and on-the-job learning. Avnet’s team of IoT and analytics experts will also partner with IBM on joint business development opportunities across multiple industries, among them medical, consumer and smart buildings.

“There is no limit to how IOT can be used to improve the world,” Patrick Zammit, global president of Avnet Technology Solutions, said in a statement. “We’re already seeing tremendous potential in the new IOT applications that we’re developing with our customers, which range from protecting our children to preventing Legionnaires’ disease.”

Global IT consulting and technology services provider Capgemini will collocate a team of cognitive IoT experts at the IoT center. The company aims to help its clients with digital transformation. Capgemini will co-locate its technical and business development experts alongside IBM’s.

Indian multinational provider of enterprise and communications IT and networking technology Tech Mahindra will locate a team of six developers and engineers within the Watson IoT headquarters to help deliver on its vision of generating substantial new revenue based on IBM's Watson IoT platform. Tech Mahindra will also use the center to co-create and showcase new solutions based on IBM’s Watson IoT platform especially for healthcare, industry 4.0 manufacturing, precision farming, insurance and banking and automotive.

Twitter: @Bernie_HITN
Email the writer: bernie.monegain@himssmedia.com


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