Cebit digitization fair kicks off in Hanover | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 14.03.2016
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Cebit digitization fair kicks off in Hanover

The world's leading fair for the digitization of the economy has started in Hanover, Germany. By 2020, many business processes are expected to involve the Internet of Things, and this is clearly reflected at the fair.

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Cebit all about digitization of economy

Answers as to how best to digitize business workflows are once again being sought at this year's Cebit fair in the western German town of Hanover.

Roughly 3,000 companies from about 70 nations have until Friday this week to present and debate the latest technology related to Industry 4.0, digital mobility and the Internet of Things, which requires a closely meshed network able to transmit data from sensors to the cloud.

As Cebit organizers point out on the fair's website, cloud services are rapidly gaining in importance particularly for small and medium-sized companies, which are eager to offload routine tasks from IT teams.

Broadband Internet

EMEA Central Vice President Dirk Häussermann points out that historically, applications were "the primary structural element serving individual enterprises." But while this approach may have worked well in the 1990s, the focus is now much more on the efficient digital handling of data and data security. "In the end, it's the data in the application that delivers the business value, not the application itself," Häussermann argues.

Later on Monday, German Economics Minister Sigmar Gabriel and EU Digitization Commissioner Günther Oettinger are scheduled to visit the fair in Hanover to show their support for a speedy transformation of industrial processes.

According to Germany's newspaper "Süddeutsche Zeitung," Sigmar Gabriel is to announce his ministry's "Digital Strategy 2025." In line with this strategy, additional billions of euros are to be pumped into digitizing the German economy and removing procedural obstacles.

But above all, the extra money is to go towards faster Internet connections across Europe's powerhouse. "Without fast connections, the whole strategy will come to nothing," said Matthias Machnig, state secretary in the Economics Ministry.

hg/nz (Reuters, AFP)

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